For two decades, AARP has made a point to cut through all of the silliness that floods movie theaters every year by celebrating what it calls “Movies For Grownups” with its annual Movies For Grownups Awards—with the only thing that makes a movie “for grownups” being that it doesn’t have superheroes. Seriously, genre movies are fine, as you’ll see from this year’s winners, and even animated movies are fine since Up was nominated in 2010. Hell, Star Wars: The Last Jedi won Best Picture in 2018, which makes sense because it’s a perfect movie, but you can’t really argue that there’s something there that is more “for grownups” than anything in Black Panther.
Anyway, the Best Picture winner at this year’s Movies For Grownups Awards is so definitively “for grownups” that they might as well hang its jersey from the rafters and rename the award in it’s honor: Top Gun: Maverick. It has no superheroes! It acknowledges the existence of sex! It has fighter jets! The main star is 60 years old! It’s a sequel to a movie that you’d have to be a grownup to remember seeing in theaters, if you ever saw it at all!
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That may be one of the most obvious choices ever made by the Movies For Grownups Awards, but there are still some cool picks from this year’s winners: Michelle Yeoh won Best Actress for Everything Everywhere All At Once (a movie with grownup themes, even if they’re presented in a heavily stylized package) and Jamie Lee Curtis won a Career Achievement award (are the new Halloween movies for grownups? They have to be for someone). Baz Luhrmann had a good showing, winning both Best Director and Best Time Capsule for Elvis, with Best Time Capsule seeming like an award that was designed just for movies like that.
Meanwhile, possibly just because of its title, FX’s The Old Man and star Jeff Bridges won Best TV Series and Best Actor (TV). If you’re curious, Yellowstone was nominated but didn’t win, possibly as a preemptive response to people who may have a stereotypical view of what grownups like, like how the Oscars will sometimes violently reject movies that they see as preachy Oscar bait (while paradoxically celebrating movies like Green Book, which Movies For Grownups also somehow loved).
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