SOMETHING'S GOTTA GIVE
Written by Nancy Meyers
Reviewed by Barbara Fielding
Harry Sanborn (Jack Nicholson) is a bona fide bachelor who never dates women over thirty. Harry says he "...enjoys the sweet, uncomplicated satisfaction of a younger woman. Some say I'm an expert on the subject--guess that's 'cause I've been dating them for 40 years."
Harry, a music executive for Drive By Records, follows his latest girlfriend, Marin (Amanda Peet), to the Hamptons for a romantic weekend at her mother's beach house. When Harry goes to check out the fridge in his skivvies, he is surprised to find Marin's mother, Erica Barry (Diane Keaton), and Aunt Zoey (Frances McDormand), are spending the weekend at the beach house, too. Zoey thinks they are all sophisticated adults, and there is no reason why they all can't enjoy the weekend together. Erica, an uptight woman, tries to politely hide her appalled response to the age gap between her daughter and her "boyfriend."
After dinner and some stirring banter, Marin and Harry head off to the bedroom for some intimate privacy. Over the sounds of Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get It On," Marin screams for her mother. Erica finds Harry collapsed on the floor, the apparent victim of a heart attack. Erica is forced to give Harry mouth to mouth and CPR as Marin calls for help. Harry is treated at the hospital by Dr. Julian Mercer (Keanu Reeves). Julian immediately recognizes Erica Barry, the successful New York playwright. He is instantly attracted to her and asks her out to dinner. Meanwhile, Harry is treated for a mild heart attack due to using Viagra, and released as long as he agrees to rest quietly at Erica's house.
Thrown together while Zoey and Marin go back to the city, Harry and Erica strike sparks off each other. Harry finds himself drawn to a woman near his own age for the first time, and Erica responds to Harry despite herself. Marin and Harry break off their affair before it ever really starts, and Marin practically pushes her mother into Harry's arms. But Julian isn't going to just walk away--he uses his house calls as an opportunity to check on Harry and to win Erica over. Soon Erica finds herself caught between the young persistent doctor, and the unexpected chemistry she feels between herself and Harry.
SOMETHING'S GOTTA GIVE is a rare and wonderful adult romantic comedy which will make you laugh and groan at middle age ailments and romance. My husband turned to me after the movie and said, "You have to be a certain age to get how funny some things are." This story is about falling in love when you least expect it, after you've grown into the person your life makes you. Keaton and Nicholson are an inspired pairing for the roles of Erica Barry and Harry Sanborn. The charisma and chemistry sizzles in every scene with these two actors. Frances McDormand is wonderful as Zoey, a feminist professor of women's studies.
Written and directed by Nancy Meyers (What Women Want, The Parent Trap, Father of the Bride), this story is handled with great humor and snappy dialogue. The set designs and Keaton's wardrobe were a visual treat and Michael Ballhaus' cinematography was outstanding.
Running time 125 minutes, Rated PG-13 for language, sexual content and brief nudity.
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