Garry Marshall’s 1988 weepie classic, Beaches, starring Bette Midler and Barbara Hershey, is getting a 21st century remake, courtesy of Lifetime. In the updated version, Idina Menzel and Nia Long play the pair of childhood friends who struggle to find success and happiness in their wildly different lives, but whose unique friendship endures through it all. Below is a step-by-step guide to help you maximize your enjoyment of this Saturday night made-for-tv movie.
- Remember that Idina Menzel is in it. Sure, her performance won’t bring her any closer to filling in the remaining two gaps (yes, two, since only the songwriters for “Let It Go” actually won the Oscar) in her quest for EGOT glory, but it’s still good! Maybe it’s not Rent, or Wicked, or Frozen, or… or If/Then… or even Glee, but she sings(!), which is really what we’re here for, isn’t it?
- Focus on Nia Long’s nicely understated efforts to play Hillary with quiet strength. There are moments when—wait, did someone say Chardonnay? Ohthankgod. Yes, please.
- Try not to dwell on the 90210-ish ages that Idina and Nia are supposed to be playing early in the movie. Is it the ’90s? The ’00s? Is this a Clueless remake, too? Were Lea Michele and Keke Palmer really too busy with Scream Queens to play believable 20-something versions of the leads?
- Commercial break! You know what pairs well with Chardonnay? White wine. Keep pouring: the glass is small.
- DON’T think about Bette Midler. Or if you do, think about what she’s going to say about this on Twitter.
- DO think about Mayim Bialik and remember that she was actually a pretty solid child actor. Finding a kid that can remember lines AND deliver a non-wooden performance is tough work, so cheers to Garry Marshall (sigh—damn you, 2016). Drink.
- Pay close attention to the background actors and see if you can spot the same person on the pier, in the paparazzi, and with the crowd cheering for CC. It’s like Where’s Waldo, but if you do succeed in spotting someone, then it would seem you need a top-up!
- Yes, it would be wrong to root for heart disease. You’re a bad person. Just be patient.
- Get ready, ‘cause it’s finally happening! THIS IS IT!!! “Did you ever knoooow that you’re my heeerooooo? You’re everything I wish I could beeeee. I could fly hiiigher than an eeeagle, ‘cause you are the wind beneath myyy wings.” It doesn’t matter what your neighbors / roommates / cats think: you know you sound just like Idina. Let the haters hate.
- Cry anyway. It may not pack the same emotional punch as the original, but that’s what you planned on doing when you sat down to watch this, so just let it all out. It’s ok.
PRO TIP: You know what you can now use your empty glass for? Ice cream.