If Burt Reynolds is really searching for a sense of meaning in The Last Movie Star it’s because he might need a refresher on just why people followed him in the first place, not why he got into doing what he’s doing. Playing the part of a retired stuntman/actor, Reynolds is duped into going to what he thinks is a film festival when in actuality it’s a bunch of kids that have gotten together to quiz him about his time in the spotlight. You can guess that it’s a very thinly veiled attempt by Reynolds to push forth an idea of what it means to get older and irrelevant in the film industry, but it’s also a great fiction since you know very well that Reynolds, who was never really in sync with the critics, has still been a beloved movie star for decades. The man gave us some of the greatest films of all times and he’s still doing his thing, so that alone tells you that he loves the business.
Ariel Winter even gets to chime in on this movie as she’s the person responsible for picking him up and driving him around. Yep, Alex from Modern Family is starring right alongside Burt Reynolds. The idea that this movie could be about an old man and what it’s like to lose relevance or desire in the film industry isn’t really the point. If anyone can possibly make a person feel a though they’re not valued it’s the individual. But some individuals do tend to take what the critics and fans say personally, and tend to lose something of the connection between their love for the industry and their ability to keep going as is their desire. It takes some doing, but finding that connection once again is very possible and can even kickstart a person’s love for their passion and get them back on the right track.
Burt Reynolds is the type of actor that has never really kowtowed to anyone as far as we’ve seen and has always gone his own way, so critics have been less than a factor in his career. But as time goes on and people continue to age they still need to be able to realize that same connection and utilize it in ways that will allow them to both remember the days when they were at the top of the mountain and reconcile with that in order to realize that they’ve reached the other side and are still well ahead of the rest. Their climb is over at that point and they can enjoy the fruits of their labors as they continue onward doing what they love the most without the anxiety of having to top one person after the next in a bid for Hollywood supremacy. There’s no more need for Reynolds to prove anything, and as a result he finally gets to just enjoy what he’s doing, as he’s been doing for a while, and not feel the need to compete with others. It’s the honor afforded to those that manage to reach old age with their intellect and wisdom still intact.
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