You Can’t Put a Price On a Good Time #GoingInStyle

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GIS-FilmPoster.jpgMy 82 year old father in law has always lived by a mantra that I recite every time I choose to indulge in an experience that might be a bit out of my price range: “You can’t put a price on a good time!” After attending the premiere of the new film “Going in Style,” it makes me even more convinced that my father in law is totally on to something – life is too short to not be spending time and money on the people you love most.
In director Zach Braff’s comedy, “Going In Style,” Oscar winners Morgan Freeman (“Million Dollar Baby”), Michael Caine (“The Cider House Rules,” “Hannah and Her Sisters”) and Alan Arkin (“Little Miss Sunshine”) team up as lifelong buddies Willie, Joe and Al, who decide to buck retirement and step off the straight-and-narrow for the first time in their lives when their pension fund becomes a corporate casualty.
The film starts out with a bang when Joe (Michael Caine) discovers he no longer has the funds to pay his mortgage and suddenly finds himself in the middle of a bank robbery. When thieves get away with the crime, Joe, an avid Law & Order watcher, contemplates robbing the bank too so that he can get his money back and continue to care for his family without having any worries. While his friend Willie is convinced a heist by seniors could work, their more cynical friend Al is a bit skeptical at first until Joe is able to convince him to bite the bullet and join them on a quest to rob the same bank that now has all their money.
While I don’t think I’d resort to a bank robbery to protect my financial future, what I do know is that when I eventually become a senior citizen, I definitely want to be in a place where I don’t have to worry about providing for myself or my family. It’s pretty daunting to think that after working so hard, for so long, a company can just take away someone’s life savings. While I no longer work for a corporation and have been on my own for more than a decade, I do have retirement funds set aside for the day I’m eventually lucky enough to stop working. For now, I think a lot about how much it’s going to cost to keep a roof over our head, pay for college for two kids and still manage to retire at an age where my husband and still have our health and all our marbles and can explore the world without a care in the world.
More often than not, our nation’s elderly find themselves living in poverty even after they’ve put in decades of their lives in the workforce where they saved for retirement. Some may have fallen victim to a Ponzee scheme – like my parents’ next door neighbors who lost their life savings thanks to Bernie Madoff. Or others, like Joe, Willie and Al could be the victims of corporate greed when their own company robs them of their pension fund. My own parents worked for the Board of Education and were lucky enough to have enough retirement savings that has enabled both of them to retire at 55 and own homes in Florida and Southampton. And while they may seem set for life, my parents have still faced financial difficulties as retirees.
Will the same hold true for me and my husband? I honestly don’t know – especially since so much money is going to be leaving our bank account over the next eight years as we send our daughter and our son to college. I can totally relate to Michael Caine’s character Joe who wants to provide for his daughter and granddaughter as they struggle to make ends meet.
Willie’s (Morgan Freeman) situation is also a common one too – he’s in desperate need of a kidney transplant but has terrible insurance and wouldn’t qualify for one anyway because he’s too old. He hasn’t seen his family in a long time because he can’t afford the airfare and he’s afraid to break the news to his daughter, granddaughter and best friends.
Al (Alan Arkin) is the cynic of the group who no longer looks forward to anything and criticizes everything. That is until Annie, played by Ann-Margret, finds a way into his heart and finally gets him to start changing his negative outlook on life so he can finally see things in a positive light. He also becomes re-energized because he and Annie are having sex like rabbits. I know…TMI!
As I watch my own parents reach the same age as the characters in the film, I think about what their outlook in life is and how they’ve been instrumental in framing my own vision of the future. My parents have always believed in traveling and have taken me along on vacations in Europe, South America and the Mediterranean. This summer, I’ll be embarking on a special trip with my daughter, mom and mother in law when we head to Paris to celebrate my daughter’s graduation and her 18th birthday. Despite the fact that I have tons of bills looming in my future, I’m going with my father in law’s motto for now — “You can’t put a price on a good time.” Especially when that means I’m going to be making memories to last a lifetime with my family. That’s the message behind “Going in Style” – what’s the point of living your last days if you’re not enjoying them to the fullest? It’s a message we should all take to heart and never take for granted. I know I did and am happy I’ve been #GoingInStyle for years now!
Going in Style opens this weekend in theaters nationwide. Check out the preview below:

To find out more about Going in Style, visit the film’s website, their Facebook page or follow along on Twitter @GoingInStyle.