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The Banger Sisters (2002)

Some friendships last forever... like it or not

Directed by:

Bob Dolman

Rating: 6/10

Running Time: 98 minutes

UK Certificate: r18

On DVD

Country: United States

Suzette (Goldie Hawn) and Vini (Susan Sarandon) were best friends and rock 'n' roll groupies together. Nicknamed 'the Banger Sisters' by Frank Zappa, they collected pornographic photos of rock stars while getting friendly with big acts of the day such as Jim Morrison. Now, decades later, they have gone their separate ways, with Vini becoming Lavinia, turning respectable and marrying a lawyer who has political aspirations, while Suzette remains the eternal rock chick living in the past.

When Suzette loses her job in a rock bar, she sets out to see Lavinia in the hopes of borrowing money. On the way, she picks up failed screenwriter Harry (Geoffrey Rush) and on arrival moves into his hotel room. When Suzette finally meets Lavinia, they find that they have grown so far apart they seem to have little in common. However, Lavinia's apparently perfect life with her husband and daughters is just a façade, and the arrival of Suzette is a catalyst which exposes the cracks in her family's relationships.

The strong cast are let down somewhat by the weakness of the script, which fails to explore the characters sufficiently – Harry, in particular, is underused and neglected. Hawn's performance is a class above the rest of the movie. Sarandon effectively portrays wife and mother but is less convincing as a grown-up groupie, and it is hard to imagine Lavinia as being much the same age as Suzette.

The soundtrack is the most outstanding aspect of the film including the songs 'Child o' Mine' by Roger Daltrey and G Tom Mac, and 'Fame' by John Lennon, plus some outstanding background music by big names including Steppenwolf ('Rock me, Ride with Me') and Talking Heads ('Burning down the House').

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It's Got: Goldie Hawn. A good rock soundtrack.

It Needs: More depth to the characters. Stronger plot.

DVD Extras Double-sided – full screen and widescreen options, Director’s commentary, HBO special, Blooper reel, Theatrical trailer. [Review version - Region 1 disc] DVD Extras Rating: 0/10

Alternatives:

Changing Hearts, Steel Magnolias

Summary

Pleasant 'Friday-night-in-with-the-girls’ movie, but lacking in depth

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