Jacob Richardson | 11/05/2019
A perfectly serviceable, if relatively forgettable comedy, that never pushes the boundaries.
Martha (Diane Keaton) moves to a retirement home, intending to while away her remaining days locked in a lonely house. But a nosy neighbour Sheryl (Jacki Weaver) and a requirement that every resident joins a club means that Martha is dragged out of her self-imposed exile to form an elderly cheerleading squad.
Director Zara Hayes doesn’t even try to push the boundaries in this staid comedy. Plot is as threadbare as 80 year old stockings, and every “hard right” winds up being a slow crawl, visibly from a million miles away.
Only 90 minutes long, this film is schmaltzy, cheesy and upbeat in equal measure. There are plenty of fist-pump moments for anyone who can get involved with the characters here, and certainly for Mother’s Day this seems like a no-brainer.
The characters themselves are probably the strongest element of the piece. Jacki Weaver and Diane Keaton do some great work, and the interplay between them generates laughs frequently. More importantly, the dramatic work between them, particularly a scene laden with both pathos and humor in a hospital bed, create some real emotional beats.
In the end, however, the film struggles to leave an impression. In that sense, it has a little bit of the vibe of a cheerleading performance in its impermanence. Much like cheerleading though, it can be fun when it wants to be, and that makes POMS worth a watch.
POMS isn’t great or memorable; but it will certainly elicit a few chuckles.