Something's Gotta Give (2003)
Review Date: December 09, 2003
Director: Nancy Meyers
Writer: Nancy Meyers
Producers: Nancy Meyers, Bruce Block
Jack Nicholson as Harry
Diane Keaton as Erica
Keanu Reeves as Julian
A rich, older playboy type has never gone out with a woman his age in his entire life. He likes dating younger girls because they're "light" and because that's the way he likes it. Then one day, when gearing up to nail a young hottie in her mom's Hamptons beach-house, he runs into said mother and the next thing you know, he starts to feel something for her. The woman, an aging divorcee who herself is being courted by a young, hottie doctor, finds herself in a similarly confused state about her feelings. Neo or the Joker? Tough call, but I choose...Batman!
This is not so much a horrible movie, as much as it's a lazy one that seems to rip off every other better romantic comedy out there and deliver an overall package that offers some chuckles along the way, two semi-interesting characters, but little else of consequence, originality or depth. Take one part AS GOOD AS IT GETS, minus its true, heartfelt and meaningful moments, two dashes of WHEN HARRY MET SALLY, along with several direct rips from the film, including one of its most famous lines verbatim, an ounce of the annoying cellular phone conversations from HANGING UP, an ounce of the annoying email/chat conversations from YOU'VE GOT MAIL and a handful of "romantic movie staples" like Marvin Gaye's "Sexual Healing" playing in the background during a sex scene, Paris being mentioned at least a dozen times, as well as walks on the beach or dinner by candlelight and a meaningful romantic comedy is supposed to ensue? Not on my watch. I didn't get much out of this film, other than the fact that it sported a horrible title, ran too long and left me with very little to ponder once everything was said and Nicholson-ized. It also featured very few "real" moments, plenty of "manufactured" ones and an overall sense of phoniness. Other than the film's two leads, many of the secondary characters had very little screen-time (you'd forget they were even in the film at times) and seemed only to be around in order to serve up blatant obstacles or deliver speeches straight out of writer/director Nancy Meyers' mouth.
Now while both Nicholson and Keaton were decent in their respective parts, neither was stretching their acting muscles much with Nicholson playing the aging lothario who appreciates younger women and Keaton portraying the aging, single, neurotic type. At certain points, we'd be left with only them for minutes on end, and while their repartee was a little cute at times (and I love Jack enough to pay for him simply taking a dump on the big screen), things got a little tired after a while, especially since most of their cards were given up by the end of the film's first act (ever heard of building up the sexual tension?) Some of their dramatic scenes also felt phony, especially when they included the "look at me, I'm special" types of lines that they each had to spit out. Movie dialogue becomes memorable when it comes from a real place, not when it's written by someone who wants it to become memorable. Now while absolutely nothing surprised me in the film (the whole "black rock" thing was embarrassingly see-through), I was still rooting for the two geezers along the way, so I guess I got into the film somewhat. Neo was also in the movie, which was a smart move on his part. Amanda Peet was Amanda Peet and played herself real well. Overall, I will say that this film is obviously not meant for someone like me to begin with, so don't take my opinion too seriously, but unless you're looking for something adult, light, rehashed and so obviously "obvious", drop-kick this movie out of your "chick flicks to see" list and re-rent WHEN HARRY MET SALLY or ANNIE HALL one more time and rejoice in films that actually merit the rejoicing.
(c) 2013 Berge Garabedian