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With: Salma Hayek, John Lithgow, Connie Britton, Jay Duplass, Amy Landecker, Chloë Sevigny, David Warshofsky
Written by: Mike White
Directed by: Miguel Arteta
MPAA Rating: R for language and a scene of violence
Running Time: 83
Date: 06/09/2017

Beatriz at Dinner (2017)

3 Stars (out of 4)

A Meal on Feels

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Yet another movie that seems to have grown more relevant after the 2016 election, Beatriz at Dinner is an effective portrait of the divide between people's beliefs. Salma Hayek — deliberately dowdy — plays Beatriz, a massage therapist and healer who is invited to the home of the wealthy Kathy (Connie Britton) for a quick massage before a dinner party; Beatriz saved their daughter's life and they are grateful to her. However, when Beatriz's car fails to start, she is invited to stay for the party, despite the fact that she's not dressed for it and apparently doesn't understand dinner party etiquette. There, she meets a backstabbing, selfish, greedy, nasty businessman, Doug Strutt (John Lithgow), and feels the need to stand up to him and his destructive beliefs. The characters are richly drawn and the talk is effective, but unfortunately, the movie has no idea how to end itself. (It's just like life; the left and the right have absolutely no idea how to speak to each other.) Mike White wrote the screenplay and Miguel Arteta directed. Jay Duplass, Amy Landecker, and Chloë Sevigny play the other party guests.

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