A New Ben Affleck Movie Is #1 on Streaming

By Carolyn Jenkins | 4 months ago

ben affleck

Writer, director, and actor Ben Affleck has had a prolific and varied career. While he may be known for being Zack Snyder’s gritty Batman in recent years, Affleck’s career began with an Oscar nomination and win. The Boston native clinched a win for co-writing Good Will Hunting with Matt Damon and his career path was set ever since. Affleck has won additional Oscars for films such as Argo, but his newest venture is a new film streaming on Amazon Prime. The Tender Bar has quickly become one of Amazon’s top movies since its release.

Ben Affleck has been embroiled with new updates for his Batman appearance in The Flash as well as recent comments about the filming of Joss Whedon’s Justice League. The Tender Bar flew under the radar quietly but has found success on its streaming platform. Directed by George Clooney, the film has no lack of critically acclaimed talent. The film is based on a memoir of the same name and details the heartwarming tale of a young man growing up in Long Island.

In his 2005 book, J.R. Moehringer details his specific experience of growing in the ‘70s and ‘80s in New York. Much of his childhood memories were created at local bar Dickens (via Decider). Many of his experiences depicted in the book as well as the film are his struggles being raised by a single mother at the time. His father was a radio DJ who was absent from his life growing up. The role of his father figure was filled by his mother’s brother who ran the local bar. His most formative memories were formed there and the film details the impact that this had on Moehringer’s life. Ben Affleck portrays Uncle Charlie who gives his nephew many life lessons.

The Tender Bar rounds out its cast young actor Tye Sheridan as the main role of J.R. Also notable actors Lily Rabe and Christopher Lloyd plays his mother and his grandfather respectively. Ben Affleck’s Uncle Charlie encourages J.R. to explore his writing while he dispenses wisdom from a bar stool. The coming of age story was acquired by Amazon Studios but there was a time where it seemed as though the film would not see the light of day. The Tender Bar was determined to be in turnaround until George Clooney contended to make it his own (via Collider). This, in addition to Ben Affleck’s involvement, created a space for the film to exist.

The film started filming in February of 2021. The Tender Bar was not filmed on location but did take residence on the East Coast. The production studio was in Devens, Massachusetts, which is fitting for Ben Affleck’s brand as a Boston man (via Decider). Most of the shooting locations were around this area with the location of the bar Dickens in a Boston suburb. Though this is not the Long Island location from the book, it does add a bit of local flavor.

The premiere of the film took place on October 10th, 2021 at the London Film Festival and went on to premiere for audiences in December. The Tender Bar had a limited release in theaters on December 17th with a wider release on December 22nd. But it seems that most audiences had a chance to view the film when it hit Amazon Prime on January 7th (via Collider). With the Ben Affleck film being an Amazon production, it looks as though The Tender Bar will be there to stay for the time being.

Some outlets, including Variety, are praising Ben Affleck’s role as Uncle Charlie. This is in direct contrast to the comic book-related films of Batman and Ridley Scott’s medieval drama The Last Duel. Instead, this film is more family-friendly and Affleck works in the role. In addition to Clooney’s direction, it may even be a contender in Oscar season. However, reviews on the film are decidedly mixed. While Affleck’s contribution is accepted, The Tender Bar does not land with everyone.

Metacritic gave the film a score of 53 and on Rotten Tomatoes it has a 52%. But even if reviews are decidedly lukewarm, audiences are coming around on Ben Affleck. After backlash against his appearances as Batman, the actor has become the selling point for the film. And with the film rising on the charts for streaming on Amazon, there is no doubt that many audiences are giving this film a watch.