After his wife died a few years ago, Ben (Robert DeNiro) has tried everything to fill his days. He has traveled around the world, learned new languages. You name it, he has tried it. But he finds that he still has a void that needs filled. When Ben sees a post looking for senior citizen interns for an internet startup, he sends in his video application.
Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway) runs About the Fit, the internet startup that has seen exponential growth in the 18 months it has been in business. The corporate environment is very casual and seeks to promote creativity. Jules is hands on with her business, to the point where she even handles customer calls from time to time. However, her hands on approach and dedication to the company is taking its toll. Jules doesn’t sleep. She is constantly late. And she barely sees her young daughter, Paige (JoJo Kushner), and her husband, Matt (Anders Holm).
Jules isn’t excited with the fact that Cameron (Andrew Rannells) has assigned Ben to be her intern. She is too busy to be bothered with an intern. And, to be frank, Ben is a little too observant for her taste. Nonetheless, Ben does everything he can to be a good intern. Meanwhile, the other interns, employees, even Jules can learn some valuable life lessons from Ben.
I was set for The Intern to be a less-than-stellar movie. Robert DeNiro’s characters of late seem to be DeNiro’s own caricature of Robert DeNiro. Save for a brief second where he makes his signature DeNiro frown (which brings a chuckle, and a very short homage to his old characters), thankfully, DeNiro plays the character for what he is. And that is a classy, world-wise gentleman who still has something to offer.
Anne Hathaway doesn’t disappoint, either. She plays the obsessed entrepreneur, intent on running the company her way very well. There is some real, non-romantic chemistry between her and DeNiro. Supporting characters like Adam Devine and Rene Russo add to the film’s light-hearted feel and provide ample comic relief without becoming too over-the-top. My only casting complaint is Anders Holm. He feels a little out of place, and a poor match for Hathaway.
The story, however, is a bit of a mess. They try to sell the tech aspect of the start-up a little hard in the beginning. Luckily, they get past that and focus on the characters more. Aside from that, plot lines jump around and many resolve themselves too easily and neatly. I don’t know if the writers wanted too much of a happy ending, if they were feeling rushed to wrap things up before they got to the 2 hour point, or if they just didn’t know how to finish them.
Overall, The Intern is a cute, happy little romp through the world of Robert DeNiro’s character in the modern age. It offers little new, but isn’t a bad movie. I feel most of us may be younger than the movie’s target demographic, so a lot may be lost. Take your mom on a movie date to see this one. I’m sure she’ll love it.