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A Different Kind of Intern for a New Generation

Robert J. Sodaro is an American born writer, editor, and digital graphic artist, who loves writing about comics, movies, and literature.

The Intern

Experience never goes out of style.

Experience never goes out of style.


The Intern: “PG-13“ (121min)

Starring: Robert De Niro, Anne Hathaway, Rene Russo, Anders Holm, JoJo Kushner

Directed by: Nancy Meyers

The Set-Up

What do you do when you have spent your entire life living, working loving, and doing the things that normal people do? Well, you retire, and spend your twilight years waiting to die. Or so it seems. Not so for 70-year-old widower Ben Whittaker (DeNiro), who has used his retirement years to do all the things that he never had time to do while he was working, living, and raising his family. He has traveled, read taken up tai chi, started dating again, and done a myriad of other things, only nothing seems to fill the emptiness in his life. Needless to say, Ben has come to discovered that retirement really isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

The Story

At this stage in his life, Ben is more than willing to try new things in order to fill up his time, so he winds up taking advantage of a unique opportunity to get back in the game, and he shoots a video resume for an internship job that he wants in order to become a senior intern at an online fashion site. The very successful internet startup was founded and is run by the 20-something Jules Ostin (Hathaway). Initially, the premise for Ostin’s company hiring senior citizens was to (hopefully) glean some measure of their experience, wisdom, and saavy as the company is essentially filled to overflowing with still wet-behind-the-ears, kids fresh out of college who — while they know the tech and social media of the new world — still could use some old-fashioned, old school seasoning, and mentoring to help them along.

 Robert De Niro and Anne Hathaway

Robert De Niro and Anne Hathaway

Old School isn't just "Old"

Ben is immediately assigned to intern for Jules, who (at least initially) steadfastly refuses to utilize him or his vast skillset. However, Ben’s dogged determined attitude to make this work, his incredible work-ethic, as well as his charming ways, eventually ingratiate him to Jules, as he winds up not only actually assisting her in her day-to-day work, activates but soon becomes a member of her inner circle as Jules begins to let her guard down. As his time with the company progresses, Ben begins to take on more of a fatherly role to the other employees as he begins to advise them on their careers, love lives, and other matters. Then one day he notices that Jules driver is drinking on the job and convinces him to step away from his assigned task.

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The Intern Official Trailer

The Importance of Interns

Ben then takes over as Jules’ driver, meeting her husband and young daughter, eventually becoming enmeshed in their lives and ultimately attached to Jules herself in a paternal fashion, assisting her in both her professional and personal lives. This is a very sweet and charming film that actually runs deeper than a simple, traditional RomCom as it (hopefully) shows us that even though the “elderly” aren’t super slick with social digital media, they do have important skillsets that are still necessary (and often absent) in today’s world. Further, while the still wet-behind-the-ears Millennials are glued to their mobile devices, that they too have mad skills that are worth cultivating.

The moral of the story

As it turns out, Ben has something to not only teach the various members of the company about how to run a company, but he brings a wealth of knowledge to the individual players’ personal lives themselves, assisting each of the “youngsters” in the fashion in which they each live their lives as he touches them while he weaves his way through their daily lives. In short, this film is not only entertaining, it actually offers a life lesion that we all could stand to learn.

A friendly back rub

Things heat up

Things heat up

Robert De Niro

According to IMDB, Robert De Niro has appeared in nearly 100 films since 1965

A man of style and grace

The Intern (2015)

The Intern (2015)

© 2016 Robert J Sodaro


MG Singh emge from Singapore on January 29, 2016:

A great review and beautifully written

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