Feeling a little like an unofficial sequel to The Devil Wears Prada (2006), and providing the perfect heart-warming experience to chase out the October chill, Nancy Meyers’ The Intern came right on time.
The film follows Ben Whittaker (Robert De Niro), a seventy-year-old widower, who applies for a senior internship role in an online clothing company, About the Fit – run by Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway). It’s definitely an interesting and refreshing change of pace, and Hathaway and De Niro have excellent onscreen chemistry. The developing bond between slow-and-steady Ben and working-mom Jules feels natural. The main conflict is pretty standard; Jules is struggling to balance work and family so she’s caught between either bringing in an outside CEO to lighten the load or staying on to nurture the company she’s founded.
The Intern is sweet. It’s warm and full of belly laughs but there’s nothing spectacular to be found here and none of the comedy is particularly fresh or interesting. Gags are rehashed and every now and again the film crosses the line between casual silliness and outright nonsense. In a way that works for it; The Intern doesn’t seem to be trying to break through any glass ceilings but as much as that adds to its comforting simplicity it does mean the second and third acts begin to drag a little.
Outside of Anne Hathaway’s Jules, none of the characters are particularly well-developed. Even Ben is less of a person in his own right and more of a symbol of a bygone age, something Meyers uses most of the second half of the film to preach about. Therein lies the main problem with The Intern; it feels like the film stops telling a story and becomes more about making a point about the changing gender roles in our society. It is an undeniably good point but the film suffers for it.
All in all though, The Intern is perfect for a bit of harmless, if slightly worn, fun.
The Intern is released nationwide on 2nd October 2015.
Watch the trailer for The Intern here: