“It’s never too late to start over, never too late to be happy.” — Jane Fonda

Who would want to listen to Blythe Danner sing “Cry Me a River” in a karaoke bar? Who even knew she could sing like that? I would, and she does.

“Dreams” is the story of Carol Petersen, a widow of 20 years, whose husband, who must have had great insurance, died in a plane accident those two decades ago, leaving her in comfortable surroundings.

Carol lives alone in a very nice L.A. suburb neighborhood bordering a golf course, where her four best friends live in the posh local retirement village she refuses to join. Our Carol is not going into that ” Good Night.”

Carol seems to have adjusted to those empty 20 years, sustained by the daily joviality of her four bridge partners, a growing fondness for white wine, a nice income and her beloved dog, who, spoiler alert here: she has to put to sleep in the first 20 minutes. Wait in the lobby until your friends call you.

We are invited into Carol’s life just as her planet is shifting, and the forces of change have somehow found her and decided she needs one. The force gives her Lloyd (Martin Starr “Silicon Valley”) a late 20s pool boy with a nice smile, caring thoughts and a cynical sense of humor. Is Carol a “cougar” in the making? Perhaps, but there is another knock on heart’s door.

Meet Bill, (gnarly, old Sam Elliott, fresh from playing a baddie on “Justified.”) Bill is a silver-haired charmer, also with a light cynical air, lots of money, retired, no family, and a swell boat in the marina.

We suspect that this will be the plot: Carol will not go to bed with the pool boy, and instead take up Bill’s offer of marriage. There is some sex here, after a 20-year drought, but I’m not telling you who with, and ruin the fun.

There are several card scenes with her playmates, old television pros, Mary Kay Place, Oscar nom June Squibb and Rhea Perlman. They serve to give us all we need to know about Carol, and a bit about them selves, with two very funny toss in scenes: a speed dating scene at the retirement village, and when Friend Sally (Rhea Perlman) introduces her playmates to her medical marijuana magic maker bong.

This trip leads to a hilarious trip to the local market for $75 worth of munchies.

About this time, you’ll be wondering when director Brett Haley and co-writer March Basch are going to send Mr. Silver Hair and Carol sailing off into the sunset toward Tahiti on his swell boat.

Sorry. Haley and Basch and company aren’t interested in movie of the week predictable plots. There are a few knots in this silk rope of a plot, a few tugs at our heart strings and an unexpected surprise or two.

Of course Ms. Danner already owns our heart strings after a couple of decades on screen, especially as her turn playing Aurelia Plath, the mother of poet Sylvia Plath in “Sylvia.”

The supporting cast, all polished pros, turn in their time cards fully punched, and deserve our praise for having to compete with Blythe Danner for an entire movie.

Rob Givens handles his camera well, and Haley’s editing keeps it all smooth and seamless.

But it’s Danner who holds it all together, as life’s twilight glow deepens to amber.

Danner, who lost her own beloved husband, writer/director Bruce Paltrow in 2002, quite clearly went to the well to bring up a bucket of buried memories for those scenes where her lovely sky blue eyes turn dark with pain.

Carol’s story is one oft told in the lives of many women her age, with equal shares of laughs and tears.

J.P. Devine is a former stage and screen actor.

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