By October 2012, Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman, Kevin Kline and Mary Steenburgen were cast. Initially, Jack Nicholson was attached to the project for the role of Billy in early development. Christopher Walken and Dustin Hoffman were considered for the role of Sam. Though the four male leads had crossed paths before at various times in their careers, this marks the first ever joint venture for all four men. At the same time, principal photography commenced, and took place in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Atlanta, Georgia.
The film stars Douglas, De Niro, Freeman, Kline and Steenburgen. Its stars are such pros, they're so enormously charismatic and have such lovely chemistry with each other, it's hard not to be charmed by their mere presence on screen. All three stars deliver exactly what you expect from them -- nothing more, nothing new - but their onscreen familiarity is a strange comfort in itself. Yes, it's good to see these wonderful actors get together in, well, almost anything, but this broken-down jalopy of a movie is not, to put it charitably, an ideal vehicle.
A thoroughly unfunny misfire, Last Vegas manages the incredible feat of wasting more than a century of combined acting experience from its three talented leads. Originality is not the purpose of the film, the kind of old-fashioned entertainment that gives old-fashioned entertainment a bad name. The film is light on laughs and plays it safe far too often. It's dramatically and comically impotent. This wheezy comedy inspires little more than melancholy reminiscences of all four men's earlier work. Scripts this bad will sometimes seem fun with enough enthusiasm behind or in front of the camera, but the star power on display isn't enough to make this anything but a (hopefully) forgettable misstep for all involved. The film is a ghastly, ramshackle mess, lurching from gag to clunking gag and exacerbated by David Hennings' harsh cinematography, making everyone look considerably older than they are. An unfunny comedy that wastes a great, talented cast. Fun up to a point, but the joke wears so thin by the end that even the actors seem sick of it. It's a lame comedy is an utterly useless misfire that brings out the worst in all parties involved. It flirts with the dangers of the real world and is happy to nod to and momentarily invoke the zeitgeist but it ultimately decides to err on the side of safety. The film's weak script trips up a capable director and four legendary actors. Among the wisest things ever said about old age will always be the immortal dictum of Bette Davis: "Old age ain't for sissies." It also ain't for people whose skills have vanished completely but are pretending they haven't."
Simon says Last Vegas receives: