This would have been a 5 star movie if not for the ending. Even so, I would urge you to see it. They got so much right, even perfect, in MOST parts of this film. I was waiting for the DVD to come out and I ordered it (as of this review, it has not arrived but I've seen this one already)
UPDATE: Having now gone through the additional and special features on the DVD, I also wanted to say that they are not just simple "add ons" but help add perspective to this film. The actors speak about the fact the complexities of family relationships and Seymour-Hoffman adds his take (which can also be seen here on Amazon's own snippet from the film for now) that it isn't normal for children to be estranged from a parent. In this case, the children of a very difficult father are alienated from him.
The film struck home for me because I'm helping to care for two relatives, both elderly, one in a nursing home. Trust me, I know authenticity when it comes to catching the dynamics of family relationships, dealing with an elderly parent and all the issues that come into play. Even in the best of situations, there are tough days. Aging can go down hard and mental and physical decline, as portrayed so aptly in this film, isn't easy to watch.
Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney are also excellent as brother and sister who have their own struggles with facing reality and dealing with an imperfect father. They have their own flawed and difficult lives and then, suddenly, they have total responsibility for their father, who is left without the girlfriend or backup support that the siblings thought was there. Now what?
That is the plot, in short. Hoffman manages to be clumsy but engaging, a trait he seems to have made into an art form in many films. In this one, he and his sister (Linney) have both tension and a bond between them. I could feel their pain when they were together and Linney's judgment of her brother's lifestyle...and yet they had to find a way to get through the situation with their father as well, however awkward that might be.
Of the two, Linney is the one who tries to be the "pleaser" and fix things. She goes through bouts of denial while her brother is less apt to turn away from reality. Yet Linney also seems to have more sympathy at times. Both Seymour-Hoffman and Linney work so well together, seeming perfectly believable as two very opposite sibling, both damaged by a very flawed parent. Now they have to care for that parent.
Everything seemed so real to me. I'd been in similar situations, faced with unexpected crisis. I know that "bumbling through" is sometimes the best we can do, although there are those of us who step up to the plate with grace, tact and composure at all times. This is a film for the rest of us.
Partly, I guess, this movie was about having to grow up, in spite of oneself. I am still struggling to be articulate about it because it pulled at me so strongly that it is hard to be objective - or anything approaching it. I simply loved this movie! It is, however, VERY slow-paced and the drama may not appeal to those who want something less real. It isn't really a feel good, escapist movie. It could even be called depressing by some, although I felt inspired by it, like someone understood the particular difficulty of dealing with an aged parent.
Also, Linney and Hoffman aren't schmaltzy. If you want to know if this film is for you, consider it a "slice of life" film about two people who have to handle a father's physical and emotional decline, senility and all that. If that doesn't sound appealing to you, by all means avoid it.
However, this film made me think about aging - and I had already thought about it plenty (or so I believed). It gave me new perspective on sibling relationships, flawed parents and it also was a very engaging film, in its own niche area.
I enjoyed the film immensely, with the exception of the ending - and I have to be honest about that, so there it is. It isn't nearly as dark as my outline of it may make it sound. There are quirky moments and humorous ones.
I do agree with the reviewer who noted that people who like films like The Good Girl and Little Children may also like this one. I like those types of films and am constantly intrigued by they psychological oddities of the human character. This film explores that territory, with a story line involving two siblings and an aging parent. Because so many Baby Boomers are both aging and handling elderly parents, this is a theme that deserves plenty of attention. I'm glad this film explores the subject.
on May 2, 2008
The film handles brillantly a common challenge that many of us have to face: what to do with a demented parent.
The general problem is generic, the individual circumstances vary according to our situation in life. Money helps. A functional family life helps. Benevolent geography helps.
Linney and Hoffman are among the best contemporary actors, and they give us two people with enough problems of their own, who didn't need a demented father dropping from the sky on them, which happens due to the death of his life partner. They are siblings from a 'dysfunctional' family, the father had disappeared from their life for 20 years, he is remembered as unloving and abusive, and he does behave in a way that one would not want to meet him in real life. His 'kids' are struggling middle aged intellectuals, with pityful emotional lives, but still hopeful for improvement. (You get to hear Hoffman sing a Brecht song in German; consider this a bonus.)
Some underdeveloped mind had classified this film as a 'comedy'. That was what we expected when we started watching the film, but we soon realized how far off that label is. I mention this because it gives a good contrast to one of the strong features of the film and of its characters: there is a sense of humor in the midst of sadness. The Savages definitely would have deserved at least 2 acting award nominations at the last Oscars.
How we all come to grips with our mortality is often previewed in how we manage the care of our elders. When that elder care is focused on a parent, as it is in Tamara Jenkins's brilliant film THE SAVAGES, it not only strikes chords with individual philosophies, but is also reveals the intricacies of family relationships that come into play in coping with the final days of a parent's life. Though there is little story to this film, this is a character study about isolation, loneliness, and need that will touch the hearts of sensitive viewers.
Wendy Savage (Laura Linney) is a frustrated unpublished playwright working as a temp, a bright woman whose insecurities limit her emotional activity to an affair with a 'safe' married man Larry (Peter Friedman). Jon Savage (Philip Seymour Hoffman), her older brother, is a professor of philosophy who is writing a book on the theater of the absurd of Bertolt Brecht while living in Buffalo with a Polish woman, Kasia (Cara Seymour), who, because Jon does not wish to commit to marriage, is forcing his only emotional tie to return to Poland when her Visa expires. Wendy and Jon were deserted by their mother at an early age, left in the care of their abusive father Lenny Savage (Philip Bosco), and both siblings have distanced themselves from their father now living in Sun City, Arizona with his girlfriend of twenty years. Lenny's girlfriend dies and the signs of Lenny's rapidly encroaching dementia force Wendy and Jon to fly to Arizona to 'make arrangements' for their demented father. Coming together under duress the two siblings are forced to confront their own frustrations together with the realities of placing Lenny in a nursing home. Lenny is moved from Arizona to Buffalo, NY and the manner in which Jon and Wendy cope with the new 'family' arrangement raises problems of guilt, memories of their childhood, resentment, and ultimately the manner in which they continue with their lives.
The film could have easily become a diatribe against current nursing home conditions, but instead Jenkins through her superb script and direction levels the playing field, allowing the family frustrations to play out in equal time with the vantage point of the caregivers (well played by David Zayas, Gbenga Akinnagbe, Margo Martindale, Tonye Patano, Nancy Lenehan, Tijuana Ricks, and others). But the real power of this film comes from the bravura performances by Linney, Hoffman, and Bosco. These three actors can do more with silences and facial and body expressions that just about anyone on the screens today. Watching these gifted actors at their trade makes for a stunning film experience and one that shakes us all a bit to think about things we don't wish to consider - death, care of the elderly, and finding life in a world that usually runs a bit on the crazy side. Another quality aspect of this film is the quiet, mood enhancing musical score by Stephen Trask, who manages to combine childlike songs with simple line piano music to underscore the intimate moods of the story. Highly recommended. Grady Harp, April 08
Laura Linney and Philip Seymour Hoffman shine is the seriocomic film, "The Savages," written and directed by Tamara Jenkins. Linney is Wendy Savage, a thirty-nine year old office temp and aspiring playwright. Hoffman plays forty-two year old Jon Savage, a theater professor in Buffalo who specializes in the works of Berthold Brecht. Neither Jon nor Wendy is particularly successful, although Jon does have a steady job and is working on a book. Both have managed to make a mess of their personal lives. Jon has a Polish girlfriend who is about to return to her country; he loves her but cannot make a permanent commitment. Wendy settles for quick and humiliating liaisons with a married man, instead of seeking a long-term relationship with someone who is free to give her the love that she craves.
The siblings have never been particularly close, but they are reluctantly thrown together when their elderly father, Leonard Savage, is ejected from the Sun City, Arizona retirement home where he sponged off his girlfriend for years. Leonard is becoming forgetful and agitated, and the two younger Savages must decide what to do for a father who abused and neglected them. Jon dutifully arranges for Leonard to be placed in a decent enough facility in Buffalo, but Wendy is so upset by her father's decline that she unfairly lashes out at her brother. As the weeks pass, the two try to put their rancor aside and begin to empathize with one another. They also start to realize that there is a statute of limitations on blaming your parents for everything that is wrong with your life.
Tamara Jenkins nicely balances humor and poignancy in a film that is moving but never schmaltzy. The veteran actors include Philip Bosco, as the angry and confused Leonard Savage, a man who furiously rails against the dying of the light. Although he barely knows his children, he knows that he doesn't much care for them. Hoffman embodies the scruffy intellectual who is more expert in German theater than he is in interpersonal relationships. Linney delivers a beautifully nuanced performance as an insecure woman who is so out of touch with her feelings that, at times, she can barely think straight; her tirades try the patience of her long-suffering brother as well as of the nursing home staff. The fine supporting cast includes Peter Friedman as Wendy's irritating lover and Gbenga Akinnagbe, a compassionate orderly who does what he can to boost Wendy's self-confidence. The sole false note comes at the end, which is a bit too neat considering what has gone before. However, "The Savages" is worth seeing for its understated satirical humor, outstanding performances, and unflinching depiction of the horrors of old age.
Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney give us a pair of performances right out of their standard playbooks...and the remarkable thing is that they both work so well. Hoffman's slobby demeanor, unshaven face, red eyes and a delivery so bored you can tell it just feels like his character can barely stand the idea of talking are nothing new...but they are still effective. Linney gives another over-energized, on-the-edge but super intelligent performance...again, nothing new...but still very welcome.
These two play siblings of the Savage family, who, while not exactly estranged, probably aren't spending much time with each other either. Hoffman is a Brecht scholar and professor in Buffalo, and Linney works as a temp in NYC, while waiting for a grant that will allow her to pursue her dreams of playwrighting. They are brought together when they have to bring their father (Philip Bosco) back to New York after his long-time girlfriend dies. Dad is suffering from early stages of dementia and has other ailments, so Hoffman persuades Linney that the only place for dad is a nursing home.
I fully expected this movie to be an indictment against our treatment of the elderly, or one of those family dramas where everyone yells at each other all the time. Instead, the siblings are mostly uncomfortable with each other. Each is in the end-stages of relationships and neither feels comfortable sharing much about their personal lives. They agree to live together for a little while, so they can trade off looking in on dad. The movie mostly explores their brittle relationship with each other. Dad clearly wasn't much in the parenting department, and no doubt his kids owe a lot of their failures and foibles to that fact...but Dad is now mostly a non-entity. He sometimes recognizes them, and sometimes he resists efforts to move him or change his clothes...but mostly he is lost and passive. He's hardly the man they both grew to dislike...he's mostly an obligation. To the credit of the brother and sister, they never argue over who will "take care of dad" or spout clichés like "you're getting off easy." They both understand that this burden has fallen to them, and while not happy about, they will handle it.
Hoffman is more practical. He finds Dad a nursing home near his house. It's got a plain exterior and feels like a hospital. They take medicare and can provide for dad. (In fact, I really enjoyed the fact that this home, while still somewhat depressing, actually cared for its patients, treated them with respect and didn't generate any enmity from the audience.) To Hoffman, the place is fine. Linney wants dad somewhere "nicer," preferably a place in Vermont. She is somewhat driven to find her dad a nicer spot...probably out of some misplaced guilt.
Not a lot happens in this film. Director and writer Tamara Jenkins is very blessed to have these two great actors, because they make all their interactions crackle with wit, sadness and believability. They love each other...but not in a way that gives them much joy. They are siblings who share little beyond an appreciation for theatre and a dieing father. Yet in many ways, the movie shows them jockeying for the approval of the other. Linney wants to be successful in her brother's eyes, because she thinks he looks down on her. Truth is, he doesn't look down on her all that much...but he's pretty down on himself too and that drags everyone under. Hoffman and Linney are a great cinematic team, and I'd love to see them work together on something again. They whole time I was watching them, I was imagining seeing them in a play together...that would be worth seeing.
Philip Bosco is also VERY good as the father. His expression alternates from confusion to anger to disappointment to sadness to emptiness to very mild happiness. He's not an easy guy to like...but he is by no means the clichés dementia victim so many movies dish out. In fact, Jenkins has made all three characters very specific and unique. While it's always a bit heavy-handed to see characters who are writers or "in theatre," even that works for this film, because these two have to live out pretend lives because their real lives hold so little joy. (It's a very nice touch that Hoffman is a Brecht scholar...Brecht was all about the head and not the heart. He didn't want his plays to have real emotion...Hoffman's character is somewhat afraid of real emotion too.)
This isn't an earth-shattering film. It has moments of great humor and also some sadness. Mostly, it just feels like a fairly believable slice-of-life. It's not an important film...but it has some great performances, and that makes it very worthwhile.
Tamara Jenkins, the director of "The Savages" gets everything right in this movie: from the starkness of the nursing home--whatever euphemism you may use to describe it, as Jon Savage (Philip Seymour Hoffman) reminds his sister Wendy (Laura Linney) it's a place where people die and awful things happen-- to the cluttered lives of the Savage family. Jon and Wendy, estranged from their father and living far away from him (he has been living in Arizona with a common-law wife; Jon lives in Buffalo, Wendy in New York City) get the message that their father (Philip Bosco) has become demented and is writing with his own feces on the walls of the house where he is living. The film is all about how these two children, not particularly close to each other and certainly not to their father, have to make difficult decisions about how to care for him in his illness and impending death. (There is a humorous but at the same time devastating scene in a restaurant when Jon and Wendy approach the subject with their father about how he feels about life support if he is in a coma and after that then what, to which he screams, "pull the plug" and "bury me."
This movie is pitch perfect as those of us who have spent time in nursing homes visiting dying relatives can attest. You recognize the sometimes forced cheerfulness of the staff but also the wisdom of some of them, the drab surroundings, the Christmas decorations, etc. The film is essentially carried by the three principal actors who give fine performances. Ms. Linney was nominated for an Oscar for her performance. Mr. Hoffman should have been (although he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his role in "Charlie Wilson's War") as he is one of our very best actors as is evidenced here in this film which has such a "lived in" feel to it. Both Jon and Wendy, in caring for their father, come to grips with the messiness of their own lives and make some corrections, however small, in the direction they are going.
This movie will wring you out. I left the theatre ready to watch Ginger Rogers on the big screen do some fancy steps if she does have to dance backwards.
"It's the pleasure of a true-to-life tale told by a director and actors who've sunk so deep into their movie together you wonder how they ever surfaced. You live with Jon and Wendy Savage gratefully, even when they can't always do the same." Manohla Dargis
"They mess you up, your mum and dad," Philip Larkin wrote, says Peter Travers. The two Savages, Wendy and Jon are as screwed up as they come, but they are likable, wonderfully human people. Wendy lives in NYC and is a temp while trying to write plays, and John is a professor of Brecht in Buffalo- and yes, they do shuffle off to Buffalo. Wendy has a married lover and Jon a Polish girlfriend, but he is not able to commit, and her visa expires and she leaves. Their father, with whom they have been estranged most of their life has dementia and needs care. Here they come to the rescue- they travel to Arizona to bring him back to Buffalo and a nursing home. All the trials and tribulations of caring for a father, with whom you have little in common, who probably physically abused you, and who can still get to you in those little ways.
The film of the days in the life of a man who is dying. Lenny, played by Philip Bosco is a stage actor who has completed 40 films, a true actor. Wendy as played by Laura Linney is as always a study in the definition of pure acting, and Phillip Seymour Hoffman, as Jon, who is a giant in our acting industry more than bring this film together.
This is a movie of appreciation for the nature that goes into making us who we are. Because as brother and sister Jon and Wendy are able to bring it all home. Not enough superlatives can be stated about the acting and the three actors who make this film. This is also a film of humour, of the everyday issues and problems that raise their head and the circumstances that make us laugh. There are no answers in this film. How do you find a nursing home for your demented father? How do you make that room one you want to live in? How do you provide love when there wasn't any at the beginning? Tamara Jenkins, the writer and director has provided a story that none of us want to live, but one we all need to see.
"Jenkins and her three astonishing actors create comic devastation out of situations as serious as a mental meltdown and picking out just the right nursing home. There is nothing cozy about The Savages. Bosco, a theater legend, seizes his juiciest film role and makes every shocking moment count. And Linney is an amazement, showing vulnerability and strength at war for a character's soul. As for Hoffman, is this his year, or what?" Peter Travers
This film is one that is so poignant, and we can all see some vestiges of our families in this tale. There have been few films that show us what real life is like when someone in our family has dementia. This film portrays that reality with humour and finally with understanding.
Highly Recommended. prisrob 04-26-08
Before the Devil Knows You're Dead
You Can Count on Me
Let's talk for a minute about the perfect actors for the perfect script. As I watched `The Savages' last night I couldn't help but think that these actors couldn't be better suited for this film. Both Laura Linney and Philip Seymour Hoffman have this incredibly natural dry wit about them that plays so well with the tightly woven dramedy Tamara Jenkins penned. Every line felt real and connects with the audience as it connects with the actors. There is nothing fake about this movie, for the actors understand their characters.
But this film is so much more than just a mere actor's showcase. No, `The Savages' moved me more than many other films this past year. In all honesty it is truly one of the best films I've seen to tackle the parent/child/sibling relationships in quite some time.
Wendy and Jon Savage are a unique brand of adult, thanks in large part to their unnatural (or all too natural) upbringing. Their father was abusive and their mother right out abandoned them and so they find themselves middle-aged and dysfunctional. Jon is a college professor who can't seem to get his personal as well as his secular life in order, and Wendy is an aspiring playwright who filters through temp services and steals from the government as a way to make ends meat. When their father Lenny finds himself homeless, Wendy and Jon are then forced to find him ample living arrangements. This in turn forces Wendy and Jon to both come face to face with their own deficiencies that resulted from the man they are now attempting to care for. They are guilty, they are bitter, they are defensive, they are confused; and through it all they become stronger people.
The performances by the three leads truly elevate this film, because without their believable conviction the weight of the film could have easily been lost. Laura Linney delivers what may very well be her finest performance to date. As Wendy she is beautifully uncontrolled. She is immature and selfish and manipulative but in an innocent and sympathetic way. She creates a character that we can condone despite her unlikable traits. As Jon, Hoffman embodies this repressed and lonely man beautifully, giving the audience a glimpse into his soul. It is true that Linney carries this film (Hoffman's performance in `Before the Devil Knows You're Dead' is superior to his performance here) but Hoffman plays off of her brilliantly, and delivers some humanity to his comedy. Philip Bosco does a fine job never falling into obscurity. He never lets you forget that this film is essentially about him and his impact on his children. There is a scene in particular where Lenny sits in the car listening to Wendy and Jon argue about him and you can see in his eyes the guilt, as if he's asking himself "did I do this?". And then, in another scene where he turns his hearing aid down in order to kill his children's bickering you can see his misery, as if he finally understands what he put his children through now that the tables have turned.
That is really the heart of this story; for it is a story about children and parents reversing roles. This idea is conveyed beautifully as the two children struggle with their treatment of a man who never cared enough about them to try. They want to be better children than he was a parent, but bitterness and guilt can manipulate your judgment.
In the end, `The Savages' is a remarkable character study that I think is important for everyone to see, parents and children and siblings, for it gives us all something to contemplate as regards to our dealings with one another. Laura Linney's surprise Oscar nomination is no longer a surprise now that I have seen her remarkable work here. I've always been a fan of her ability to relay humanity within her performances, soaking up every ounce of her naturalness within the film, and this is probably Linney at her most natural.
on July 21, 2011
Viewing "The Savages", I was blown-away by the genius that Laura Linney and Philip Seymour Hoffman brought to a subject that is more than difficult, it is life altering. With these two actors in the lead roles, how could you expect anything less than great performances. As siblings, Wendy (Linney) and Jon (Hoffman) are so human concerning the subject matter and perfectly honest in their portrayals of their characters. Theirs is not a usual sister and brother relationship. In my opinion, the best part of the film was how these two could keep it real while it couldn't have been remotely easy to remain comfortable in this heightened situation. To these characters, it seemed just like second nature.
These two are in a horrible situation. They are quickly subjected to having to deal with the care of their elderly father, after not seeing him for years and without any prior notice. They do know him quite well, and this is why they haven't seen him. They were brought up by this very cold-mannered, abusive man who neglected them and their past with him is alluded to often in different ways. His deplorable nature towards them is the most evident. This has caused these two to have many issues in their own lives involving intimacy. Through it all, Wendy and Jon care for each other, their father together and do so with an off-tilt humor that can dig through all the messes and find itself quite humorous in parts.
Tamara Jenkins, writer and director of this slice of life and space of time picture, could not have chosen more esteemed actors to pull this into reality and give it the necessary punch of feeling which it deserves. While Wendy and Jon may seem somewhat closed-off at first, and have good reason to be, they most certainly are not in the long haul. They run the gamut of emotions in their own unique ways during the short amount of time this movie captures in their lives.
This brings to light the ways caring for an elderly parent can affect the adult children with much baggage onboard. In their case, it's brought on unexpectedly, suddenly, and sends Wendy into a panic causing her to call her brother Jon. She has not seen her brother in a very long time. These two take charge of the matter brilliantly. With a dark plot their switches into humor are sometimes subtle, then blatant, and is very much appreciated during all the chaos of a family in turmoil while their father lose his physical and mental faculties. Their lives before that 'never can be ready for' phone call was self-absorbed and noticeably self-involved. Their personal relationships were less than satisfying and either codependent or full of escapism, never really being able to find the happiness that they are seeking. Realizing their own mortality now more than ever, will their father glimpse what he has put his children through?
After they go through all that they do concerning their father and their own fledgling relationship with each other, you are left knowing that they will remain the brother and sister they become. They will be much richer for it, as they each realize the importance of having each other. Some may say this is in no way a feel good movie and basically, it is not, how could it really be? After the movie's end, it left me feeling better for these two siblings and the relationship they will keep building on through the unsettling way they were forced to begin it over again.
It's been nearly a decade since her first film, 1998's idiosyncratic Slums of Beverly Hills, but writer/director Tamara Jenkins' 2007 drama really hits the nail on the head this time with this trenchant look at the inevitable indignities of aging for not only a father slipping into dementia but his two emotionally stunted children, both hovering around forty and dealing with their own personal issues which are preventing them from moving forward with their lives. I saw the preview for this movie several months ago and expected a black comedy with a deadpan toward death and euthanasia. While there are some laughs, it is really the pervasive and empathetic sadness of the situation that draws you into a very human-size story of three flawed people.
The character-driven story begins in the famous Del Webb retirement community of Sun City, Arizona, where Lenny Savage has been living with his now-severely ailing girlfriend Doris for twenty years. When Doris passes away, Lenny's two children are contacted since he is being evicted and no longer able to live on his own. His son Jon is a professor of theater in Buffalo working on a book about German playwright Bertolt Brecht, while his daughter Wendy is ironically a struggling playwright applying for a multitude of grants while doing demeaning temp work in Manhattan. Although they are both smart with similar artistic aspirations and a common phobia when it comes to long-term commitments, the siblings have become estranged from each other as well as their father. They jointly decide to take Lenny back to Buffalo where Jon has reserved a room in a rather depressing (though typical) nursing home. Naturally, the full extent of their dysfunctional family unit comes to the fore now that they are all within close proximity of one another during a particularly unforgiving winter.
What Jenkins does exceptionally well is depict the small moments, both private and shared, as Jon, Wendy and Lenny each come to terms with the inevitable. The dialogue scenes have a realistic, unsentimental edge as long-dormant feelings of resentment percolate into both vitriol and humor. The three leads are note-perfect. As the more insular Jon, Philip Seymour Hoffman accurately captures the simmering states of denial and hostility of a man whose innate brilliance is deliberately camouflaged by his disheveled, disconnected life. Playing Wendy as a self-loathing variation on the emotionally uptight character she played in Kenneth Lonergan's brilliant You Can Count on Me, Laura Linney proves again what a master she is at sharply balancing a messy bundle of neuroses like a precarious house of cards. Despite their physical dissimilarity, Hoffman and Linney are completely convincing as tension-rattled siblings in a constant state of mutual misunderstanding.
In his brief scenes, Broadway veteran Philip Bosco manages to paint the fury and confusion in Lenny with forceful, affecting strokes. On the sidelines, Peter Friedman plays Wendy's married lover with just the right amount of smarmy neediness, while Gbenga Akinnagbe has a couple of nice scenes with Linney as a sympathetic caretaker. There is nice camerawork from W. Mott Hupfel III, who effectively makes the abrupt visual transition from the color of sunny, open-spaced Arizona to the grayness of Buffalo in winter, while the eclectic music selections on the soundtrack dramatically bridge the story well. Film trivialists may recall the opening song, "I Don't Want to Play in Your Yard", as the one Diane Keaton sings during one of the more idyllic scenes in Warren Beatty's Reds. This movie will not be everyone's cup of tea, but anyone with aging parents will undoubtedly be affected by it.