Review: ‘Max Rose’ Has Jerry Lewis Tearful Over a Hint of Infidelity

Following is a NYTimes review, and here is a link to a previous blog I had written with other references also: September 5, 2012 Jerry Lewis Fired By MDA Corporate Following Presentation Of A New Cure?

Review: ‘Max Rose’ Has Jerry Lewis Tearful Over a Hint of Infidelity

Jerry Lewis, left, and Lee Weaver sharing a laugh in “Max Rose.” CreditHopper Stone/Paladin

“Max Rose,” a soggy, fragile feature about love, death, marriage and memories, might never have made it to theaters were it not for its star, Jerry Lewis. More than 20 years have passed since he appeared in the delightfully weird “Funny Bones,” and, whether from curiosity or admiration (most likely, both), moviegoers of a certain age will be unable to resist this unexpected glimpse of a true-blue legend.
Select for movie trailer: TIMESVIDEO 
A preview of the film.
Publish DateSeptember 1, 2016. Image courtesy of Internet Video Archive. Watch in Times Video »

Now 90 and with faculties undiminished, Mr. Lewis doesn’t have much to laugh about in the role of Max, a former jazz pianist and recent widower. His wife of 65 years, Eva (played in fanciful flashbacks by the lovely Claire Bloom), has left him with a broken heart and a mysterious inscription on her powder compact.
“Her life with me was a lie,” Max announces at the funeral, prompting his son, Chris (a clearly awed Kevin Pollak), to suggest bereavement counseling. The acidic look that greets this offer signals that Max and Chris have long-suppurating issues, but it also reminds us that Mr. Lewis, for all his outsize comic credentials, can be a formidable dramatic actor. In the 1980s, he was a revelation not only in Martin Scorsese’s “The King of Comedy” but also in a recurring role on the fine television series “Wiseguy,”a largely forgotten incubator of acting talent.
Here, though, little is incubating except sentiment. Manipulative as a cattle prod, Michel Legrand’s score nudges Max toward Eva’s secret past. En route, we get some sweet moments between him and his granddaughter (Kerry Bishé), as well as a night of boozy banter with his assisted-living cronies (featuring a perky Mort Sahl) that’s warmly relaxed. But the writer and director, Daniel Noah, creates no space for the story’s darker corners, or for his star to delve beneath the surface of Max’s depression and anger. Then again, who cares? It’s Jerry Lewis, so everyone can just shut up.

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