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AARP The Magazine Recognizes the Best Movies for the 50+ Audience with the 9th Annual Movies for Grownups® Awards


AARP Media Relations, 202.434.2560,
Laurie Bella, Coburn Communication, 212.536.9820,




Winners Featured in AARP The Magazine’s 2010 March/April Issue

WASHINGTON (January 27, 2010) — There’s no doubt that 2009 was a year in which 50+ actors and film makers rocked Hollywood, providing film content that drove audiences and numbers at the box office. Now it’s awards season, and AARP The Magazine has once again picked the best films for the 50+ audience with its annual Movies for Grownups® Awards. Clint Eastwood’s Invictus nabbed this year’s top honor for overall “Best Movie for Grownups” and Robert De Niro is the recipient of the Movies for Grownups Lifetime Achievement Award. The complete list of winners can be found online at and in the 2010 March/April issue of AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world’s largest-circulation magazine with more than 35.7 million readers, in homes now.

Recognized as a bellwether for the Oscar Awards, AARP The Magazine’s Movies for Grownups® Awards are also known for their unique, offbeat categories, including “Best Grownup Love Story” (Meryl Streep and Stanly Tucci for Julie & Julia), “Best Buddy Picture” (The Soloist) and “Best Movie for Grownups Who Refuse to Grow Up” (Star Trek).

“AARP The Magazine is proud to celebrate movies that engage grownup audiences with challenging topics, thoughtful new approaches, and sterling work by actors, actresses, directors, and writers age 50+, all at the top of their games. Congratulations to all of this years winners!,” said Nancy Perry Graham, editor of AARP The Magazine. “And to top it all off, who better to give our Lifetime Achievement Award to than Robert De Niro, a film icon who has captivated audiences for decades with his stellar performances in films such as Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Meet The Parents, and 2009’s Everybody’s Fine.”

Additional top honors went to Jeff Bridges who won “Best Actor 50+” for his compassionate performance as booze-soaked country singer Bad Blake in Crazy Heart; Helen Mirren who was named “Best Actress 50+” for her ferocious performance as Sofya Tolstoy in The Last Station; Alec Baldwin who was named “Best Supporting Actor 50+” for his hysterical turn in It’s Complicated; Kim Basinger who was named “Best Supporting Actress 50+” for her searing portrayal of Gina in The Burning Plain; and Kathryn Bigelow was honored in the “Best Director 50+” category for her courageous and nerve-wracking war film, The Hurt Locker.

“In 2009, 50+ actors and filmmakers took center-stage on the silver screen, turning in performances and films that were riveting and nothing short of daring,” added Bill Newcott, Entertainment Editor of AARP The Magazine. “Tackling war, apartheid, sexuality and adding real depth to romantic comedies, the 50+ Hollywood community shows once again that they are an integral, much-needed element of the film industry. And 60-year old Meryl Streep proved without a doubt that she is the leading lady of our times, a critical and box-office cottage industry.”

Before voting on this year’s winners, the editors of AARP The Magazine spent over 100 hours screening this years’ eligible Hollywood studio and independent films. Additionally, readers were invited to participate and vote for their pick for Best Movie for Grownups online. After thousands of online votes, the 2009 Reader’s Choice Award went to the box office hit The Blind Side.

The 9th Annual Movies for Grownups® Award winners are as follow:

Best Movie for Grownups: Invictus
From the moment the camera sweeps over a scene of two rugby teams in South Africa playing on their school ball fields—the white kids on a lush grass expanse, the black kids on a scrubby wasteland—we know we are in for an artisan’s look at the social scars Nelson Mandela inherited when he became president of the country in 1994. Starring Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela, this captivating film about the statesman’s decision to use rugby to unite his fractious country makes a brutal game an allegory for what tough, dirty work the business of nation building can be.

* Up In The Air
* Julie & Julia
* Up
* Crazy Heart

Best Actress 50+: Helen Mirren, The Last Station
How much longer can Helen Mirren keep redefining sexiness? As Sofya Tolstoy, the love-starved wife of Leo, she tries to seduce her celibate hubby and, well, if he wasn’t going to do anything about it, a good number of guys in the theater would have been more than willing to. It’s a ferocious performance by Mirren as a woman determined not to be scorned.

* Ellen Burstyn, Lovely, Still
* Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia
* Meryl Streep, It’s Complicated

Best Actor 50+: Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
As booze-soaked country singer Bad Blake, Bridges infuses his character with a weary humanity that has us rooting for his redemption long before Blake realizes he’s in need of it. Growling, whining, and cussing through the miserable life, Blake would be downright insufferable without Bridges’ good nature—and his surprisingly nifty way around a country tune.

* Daniel Day-Lewis, Nine
* Robert De Niro, Everybody’s Fine
* Morgan Freeman, Invictus
* Viggo Mortensen, The Road

Best Supporting Actress 50+: Kim Basinger, The Burning Pain
Tragedy is beautifully written in Gina, the sad wife and mother who risks everything for an affair. Basinger yields just enough glimpses of Gina’s state of mind to let us hurt for her.

* Judie Dench, Nine
* Marcia Gay Harden, Whip It
* Susan Sarandon, The Lovely Bones
* Imelda Staunton, Taking Woodstock

Best Supporting Actor 50+: Alec Baldwin, It’s Complicated
Somewhere along the line, Alec Baldwin became that guy—the guy who, when he pops up, brings a giddy sense that something really funny is about to happen. As the divorced-but-still-smitten ex of Meryl Streep’s character, Baldwin pouts, sneers, cries, even strips, and steals the show.

* Eugene Levy, Taking Woodstock
* Alfred Molina, An Education
* Christopher Plummer, The Last Station
* John Travolta, The Taking of Pelham 123

Best Director 50+: Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
There’s no reason why a woman couldn’t direct the decade’s most nerve-shredding war movie. With her story of a bomb squad in Iraq, Bigelow takes her place beside the Big Boys.

* Lee Daniels, Precious
* Clint Eastwood, Invictus
* Nora Ephron, Julie & Julia
* Rob Marshall, Nine
* Nancy Meyers, It’s Complicated

Best Comedy For Grownups: It’s Complicated
It doesn’t seem fair that we have to wait six years between Nancy Meyers comedies; as she proved with Something’s Gotta Give, she’s one of the few moviemakers with a perfect eye and ear for comedies that allow her middle-aged characters (in this case played by lovestruck Alec Baldwin and twice-burned Meryl Streep) to be funny, smart, and endearingly stupid while remaining unmistakably grownup.

* Away We Go
* In the Loop
* Pirate Radio
* The Informant!

Best Grownup Love Story: Meryl Streep & Stanley Tucci, Julie & Julia
It may be that Julia and Paul Child—who shared a passion for food—were as exquisitely matched and deliriously in love as their cinematic stand-ins. We can only hope that, similarly, the Childs laughed at each other’s jokes, rejoiced in each other’s successes, and held each other tenderly as they passed through middle age and beyond.

* Helen Mirren & Christopher Plummer, The Last Station
* Imelda Staunton & Henry Goodman, Taking Woodstock
* Marcia Gay Harden & Daniel Stern, Whip It
* Meryl Streep & Alec Baldwin, It’s Complicated

Best Documentary: The Way We Get By
Three great Americans—a grandmother of eight and a pair of elderly veterans—have greeted more than 900,000 returning U.S. troops at the airport near their home in Bangor, Maine. To witness the trio’s sacrifice in the face of personal problems is to know that patriotism doesn’t always wear a uniform.

* Edie & Thea
* A Very Long Engagement
* Gotta Dance!
* The Philosophers Kings
* Still Bill

Breakthrough Accomplishment: LeVar Burton, Director, Reach for Me Helming
His first grownup theatrical film, the Emmy-winning actor tackles a story of love in a hospice facility. Guiding his stars Alfre Woodard and Seymour Cassel, he deftly avoids traps that could have led to maudlin sentimentality.

Best Buddy Movie: The Soloist
The true story of Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez (Robert Downey, Jr.) and his friendship with Nathaniel Ayers (Jamie Foxx)—a schizophrenic street musician whose illness masked his musical genius—this film thoughtfully traces an adult friendship’s uneven trajectory. At its heart, The Soloist triumphs as a lovely duet by two supremely gifted stars.

* The Damned United

Best Intergenerational Movie: Everybody’s Fine
No, everybody’s not fine, as Robert De Niro’s character, retired widower Frank Goode, discovers as he travels around the country dropping in on his grown kids (played by Drew Barrymore, Kate Beckinsale, Sam Rockwell and Austin Lysy.) Learning their sad secrets leads first to heartbreak, then to determination to make up for lost time.

* The Blind Side
* Taking Woodstock
* Whip It

Best Movie for Grownups Who Refuse to Grow Up: Star Trek
In this prequel to the Star Trek saga, Kirk and Spock are still young space cadets. There’s a sense of ownership for those of us who were there when they first beamed up in the 1960s.

* Coraline
* The Princess and the Frog
* The Fantastic Mr. Fox
* Up

Best screenwriter 50+: Nancy Meyers, It’s Complicated
Few writers are as spot-on as Meyers in capturing the disconnect between men and women. Love and romance, she seems to know, are as ridiculous as they are essential.

* Joel and Ethan Coen, A Serious Man
* Nora Ephron, Julie & Julia
* James Schamus, Taking Woodstock

Best Foreign Film: Captain Abu Raed Jordan
An airport janitor (Nadim Sawalha) wears home a discarded airline-pilot cap—and becomes a hero to the kids in his poor neighborhood, who think he’s the real thing. He obliges with tales of his “exploits.”

* The Beaches of Agnes (France)
* For My Father (Israel)
* O’Horton (Norway)
* Terribly, Happy (Denmark)

Visit to read the full lineup of the 9th Annual Movies for Grownups® Award winners.

For more information or to schedule an interview with an editor regarding AARP The Magazine’s Movies for Grownups® Awards, please contact Michelle Alvarez, 202.434.2555/202.390.0032 or

About AARP The Magazine
With more than 35.7 million readers nationwide, AARP The Magazine ( is the world's largest circulation magazine and the definitive lifestyle publication for Americans 50+. Reaching over 24 million households, AARP The Magazine delivers comprehensive content through in-depth celebrity interviews, health and fitness features, consumer interest information and tips, book and movie reviews and financial guidance. Published bimonthly in print and continually online, AARP The Magazine was founded in 1958 and is the flagship title of AARP Publications.
About AARP
AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to either political campaigns or candidates. We produce AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine with over 35.7 million readers; AARP Bulletin and AARP Bulletin Today, the daily go-to news source for AARP's nearly 40 million members and Americans 50+; AARP Segunda Juventud, the only bilingual U.S. multimedia brand dedicated exclusively to the 50+ Hispanic community; and our website, AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Island.


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