Tina Fey is Portia Nathan, one of many admissions office workers who travel their area of the country to encourage students to apply for admission at Princeton, only to be rejected when they do with an admission rate of 8%, one of the lowest in the country. As Portia is preparing to make her annual rounds of school visits, she gets a call from John Pressman (played by Paul Rudd), a former classmate from her own college days who has started a school for disadvantaged youth, inviting her to visit their campus.When Portia arrives at the school, which isn’t far from her own childhood home where her mother, played by Lily Tomlin still resides, she discovers it is more of a farm than the typical school campus she typically visits. Pressman introduces her to one particular student who he feels is Portia’s son who she secretly gave up for adoption when they were in college together. Being married to her career after 16 years at Princeton as she lives with one of the professors at the school in a boring but stable psuedo-relationship, the last thing she wants intruding in her happily routine life is a child from her past.
Her mother, played by Lily Tomlin lives nearby and upon her visiting her mother, we learn they’ve had an estranged relationship for many years with many issues as they’ve each gone down their own independent path of life. What ensues after this brief character introduction and setup is neither romantic or very comedic. With a few well timed zingers, primarily by Lily Tomlin, there are a few moments of laughter but in general the unpopped kernels of popcorn at the bottom of your bag of popcorn are more interesting than the storyline. The movie is predictable and lacks any depth of character development to get the audience invested in what happens to the characters. Maybe my expectations were too high given the usual level of comedy which we have come to expect from Ms. Fey. I enjoyed Lily Tomlin’s performance, but that’s about all I can say. If you watch the trailer below, you’ll see almost every highlight of the entire movie.
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