Martha is dying, so she moves into a retirement community to spend her last days. She meets her neighbors, works to adjust, and discovers that extracurricular activities are mandatory. So, she starts a cheer squad as an “old lady.”
Like Grumpy Old Men or Cocoon, Poms plays with the attitudes and situations around growing older and losing freedom, while also recognizing that we still have choices until we run out of breath. Diane Keaton plays Martha, as a woman who is struggling with what time she has left, but who determines she’s still got a second act, returning to a missed opportunity in the past.
But Keaton’s Martha isn’t alone. Jacki Weaver (who normally plays a terrible human being) shows up as Martha’s neighbor Sheryl, the voice that drives Martha to start the cheer squad. [Rhea Perlman and Pam Grier round out the “famous” group of actresses in the film.] While the cheer team is what Martha needs, her boldness also provides an opportunity for other older women. She ends up modeling what their boldness might look like.
A funny film, and a heart-touching one, Poms definitely has a demographic: people old enough to see the freedom versus opportunity life change. But the truth is that we all go through moments like these – and we’ll all get to the place these women are. The questions that remain are: how will we approach those transitions? And who will walk with us through them?