Yes, There Is

“Hotshots” looks at a movie!

Is Anybody There - Movie PosterIS ANYBODY THERE? is a film with a fairly familiar story about the contrast between youth and old age, but it has one thing in it that makes it stand out above all the others and that makes it worth seeing: Sir Michael Caine.

Caine doesn’t like to be called “Sir,” even though he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 2000, and he doesn’t like to be referred to by his title, which is a Commander of the Order of the British Empire, or CBE.

Pretty good for a Cockney kid who was born Maurice Micklewhite, but who has been making movies for more than 50 years, i’n’t it?

Here he plays “The Amazing Clarence,” a retired magician who checks himself into “a residence home for the elderly” that is run by a young couple with a 10-year-old son named Edward.

Edward isn’t happy to meet Clarence at first, because Clarence is given Edward’s old room, which Edward was hoping he would get back after the previous resident had died in it. In fact, Edward asked his parents, “Can I have my room back now that Arthur’s dead?”

Edward is fascinated with ghosts and the idea of people dying, and he had put his tape recorder under the bed of his room’s previous occupant in order to record the very moment when he died.

Clarence and Edward take a reluctant liking to each other, and Clarence gives Edward some practical advice, telling him, “Your life changes, Buster, and not always for the better.”

Clarence also teaches Edward some magic tricks, which Edward uses at school in order to impress his classmates.

Edward then convinces Clarence to put on a magic show for the residents of the old-folks home, and despite some polite resistance at first, Clarence is eager to perform, but to say that one of his tricks ends not quite how he planned it would be a major understatement.

Along the way, both Clarence and Edward help each other out in their respective troubling times, and you will probably predict how you think the story is going to end, but you could also be very wrong.

You will also never forget who is appearing in the film and what a privilege that is.

IS ANYBODY THERE? answers its own question with a resounding “Yes, there is.”

I’m Dan Culberson and this is “Hotshots.”