5 Flights Up - 2014

Cast: Diane Keaton, Morgan Freeman, Cynthia Nixon
Director: Richard Loncraine
Synopsis: A married couple have lived in the same apartment since they married some forty years ago and are faced with real estate and personal problems when they make a decision to move.

No one enjoys change, particularly when it changes every aspect of your daily life.  Human beings are creatures of routine; so change is hard, but also necessary especially in an aging population.

Ruth and Alex spent much of their life in this apartment; Alex with his love for his art, and routine coffee runs with his little dog in tow.  Ruth with the love of her life, who coincidentally was the object of many of his portraits.  They could never have babies as we learn in the flashbacks to their youth, but they decided all they needed was each other.  Their little dog becomes sick, and on their way to the vet they learn a terrorist is making news on the Brooklyn bridge, adding lots of conflict to their current situation.

The little things about this apartment, were a running timeline of the life they shared, and a pleasant reminder of their love for one another, and life.  You see flashbacks from time to time of their earlier days where they are falling in love, and the relational conflicts that arise.
In the background there is constant news of the possible terrorist, which causes chaos during the real estate banter, and personal conflicts, making the price of the homes fluctuate, due to New York's residents feeling a little more insecure about how stable the area is to live in anymore.

After many open houses, offers made, letters written, and drawn out conversations about life and the need to change, their failures etc... they decide to keep their home.   Regardless of the fact that they must walk five flights, when it would be better with their aging bones to have an elevator.  Many quirky characters come to see the homes, as per Ruth and Alex's greedy realtor/niece - Nixon.

I personally love Diane Keaton and Morgan Freeman, so I sat through the entire movie and watched it; however, it's much of a slow contemplative narrative of life; nothing exciting except for the crazy real estate banter, and the hope that this little dog would be okay in the end, which he was.

"Who would have thought that the whole of my life's work would be worth less than the room it was painted in?" - Alex Carver

Our lives are certainly more than the homes we live in, it's who we live with and the passion with which we put into this art work called life.  When talking with an art seller, Alex was told he had to change his art to suit the people and the genres with which people were buying. Portraits were simply not selling anymore; however, an artist; Ruth quickly pointed out, paints his passion, that is why he is an artist.

When making decisions in life such as selling or buying, or making a change...it's always a matter of the heart.  Read the letter, before you contemplate the offer, always.

Great movie, great characters. I give it ★★★★☆


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