A College film for adults, At Middleton is about the complexities of post-graduate life. Though far too heavy handed to be a great film, its performances and sentimental script elevate it above simple mush. It’s sweet and touching, and altogether enjoyable.
Two parents are escorting their children to Middleton College for a campus tour. Edith Martin (Vera Farmiga) is the verbose and cautious mother of Audrey (Taissa Farmiga), a teen obsessed with language and glued to her phone. George Hartman (Andy Garcia) is the ironically named Cardiologist father of Conrad (Spencer Lofranco), a presumably aimless teen who never seems to appreciate George’s efforts. As their tour begins, Edith’s peculiar trepidation becomes palpable, both intriguing and annoying George. As her questions stray into the mortifyingly morose, Edith and George separate from the group to give their kids the embarrassment-free tour they’ve been aching for.
As Edith and George wander the campus, they gradually begin to relive their own College days. A tangible sense of nostalgia penetrates their experience of the campus, suggesting the missed opportunities and regrets that stem from hesitation and poor judgment.
At Middleton is stock schmaltz with sporadic injections of character and chemistry that elevate it above vapid feel-good status. It’s cute and quaint in spite of its propensity for heavy handedness. Would you like to know more…?