Ricki and The Flash is a story of a rocker mom Ricki (Meryl Streep) who left her family behind to pursue a career of rock and roll. As the story progresses we find out more about what exactly happened when Ricki left to follow her dreams and the fallout her now ex-husband and kids have lived with. When Ricki’s daughter Julie (played by real life daughter Mamie Grummer) is left by her scumbag husband, Ricki’s ex-husband Pete (played by Kevin Kline) calls her for help with their daughter.
Despite her rock and roll dreams, Ricki still has a deep love for her children and comes to help. As with any family, when a rarely seen parent shows back up family tensions run high. But it’s not all hurtful words and jabs as Ricki manages to pull their daughter out of her depressive funk and brings a bit of healing into their family dynamic. When the step-mother comes back from visiting her dying father, Ricki immediately sees how she doesn’t fit and goes back to LA and her lover Greg (Rick Springfield).
As all musicians can tell you, music is healing and brings people together and that’s just the happy ending we get to see as Ricki and The Flash comes to a close. Ricki shows up to her youngest sons wedding and plays a song during the reception as her wedding gift. It’s very much a fairytale ending that’s a bit cliché, but it works well in bringing this dramatic and heart wrenching realistic story to a close.
When you have a summer movie list that comprises of The Fantastic Four, The Gift, Straight Outta Compton, American Ultra and Sinister 2, it makes for a hard choice when buying your movie ticket. If it is family movie night or you’re looking for a solo movie to watch, I have five reasons why you should pick Ricki and The Flash.
Let’s start with the obvious. Meryl Streep! Any movie with Meryl Streep is instantly amazing and a must see. Any movie that also has her singing (Mama Mia, Into the Woods) is gold. Meryl Streep brings the rock star attitude and voice that will have you instantly falling even more head-over-heels for her. Just wait until you see Ricki and The Flash try and modernize their set list by singing Lady Gaga. That clip alone is a reason to see this film.
The dialog of this script is amazing. This movie has a barrage of one liners that will make you laugh, pause, and wonder if you’ve said it yourself to family members. One of the more popular ones is featured in the trailer where Ricki and her daughter Julie sneak out for a spa day. Ricki is telling Julie that one day she’ll find a gray hair and not on her head. Despite seeing it in the trailer, the audience in the theatre were laughing out loud during this scene. However, the best scene with the best lines is this one (this is not the entire scene, just highlights from it);
The love story between Ricki and Greg (Rick Springfield) is compelling and realistic. This relationship and it’s resistance to become more is entirely human and explodes on-screen. The chemistry between Meryl Streep and Rick Springfield is captivating and far better than some we’ve been forced to suffer through. Not to mention the hunkiness of Rick Springfield. It leaves us staring in awe at our screens.
Rick Springfield’s character Greg, is in the band with Ricki, backing her up on vocals and guitar. Who doesn’t want Meryl Streep and Rick Springfield as a musical duo in ANYTHING? I can’t rave enough about how amazing these scenes were. (Not to mention this is one of my favorite songs of all time so maybe I’m biased by having two of my favorites turn it into a duet.)
Last but not least; The Cast! This movie is full of heavy hitters. I’ve talked enough about Meryl Streep and Rick Springfield, but let’s not forget the others. From Kevin Kline who I’ve been a fan of since Wild Wild West and Life as a House, Sebastian Stan who is The Winter Soldier of Captain America, and Mamie Gummer who is Meryl Streep’s real life daughter. All of these cast members bring together the friction that is visibly seen among this family and the love that is still there despite the time and distance they’ve experienced.
Over all this movie is very well-rounded, story driven, and excellently cast. If you haven’t seen it yet, I would urge you to. This is one that you’ll wish you had seen on the big screen. If you haven’t seen the trailer yet, check it out!