Projections - Movie Reviews

Something's Gotta GiveSomethings Gotta Give
Starring Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, Frances McDormand,
Keanu Reeves, Amanda Peet, Jon Favreau

Something's Gotta Give is move than a little wry claptrap starring Jack and Diane, that is, Nicholson and Keaton. It's far from 1981's Reds, their last onscreen venture under award-winning direction by Warren Beatty, but this is the kind of romantic comedy that attempts to breathe life into middle age.

Director Nancy Meyers has written a role for Keaton that marks her best work since The First Wives Club. As divorced stage writer Erica Barry, Keaton, when not sobbing on her laptop, exudes the kind of appeal not seen since her heyday with Woody Allen who now markets young adult actors to draw people into his movies.

Erica's been able to adapt quite well to single life, but things will change not too long after Nicholson's Harry Sanborn reaches her quaint beachfront home. Jack is better than he was opposite Adam Sandler this past spring in Anger Management as a hip-hop record exec who regularly takes Viagra. The Lothario would seem to be similar to the star's off-screen dating preference of women not over 30. His latest savory girlfriends is Marin (Amanda Peet- Identity) who happens to be Erica's daughter and mom doesn't take much of a liking to the guy in his underwear first though to be a burglar.

However, once Harry is beset with a heart attack, there's something about Erica that catches him off guard. And his 30-ish doctor, played with sincerity by the low-key Keanu Reeves (Matrix Revolutions), begins to fall in love with the playwright who gains an unexpected confidence. Keaton releases Erica's transforming emotional condition in ways that are pleasing beyond her many mother and wife roles from the past.

Something's Gotta Give isn't sparkling with comedy and nuance throughout. Frances McDormand (Laurel Canyon) is given limited action as Zoe, Erica's outspoken college professor sister and Meyers could have worked more closely with editor Joe Hutshing to tighten things up a bit. But, the smart director offers a decent mix of physical comedy, sharp dialogue, and quiet moments that gives the 57-year old veteran actress kind of a sexy twinkle that makes her "a woman to love."

 
Frank
Chris
Tony
Jim
Howard
Jennifer
Kathleen
Avg.
Something's Gotta Give
B-
B+
B+
B
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B
B-
B

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