Something's Gotta Give (2003)


Ebert:1/2 Rolling Stone: TV Guide:1/2

Warning, minor plot points revealed!

Something's Gotta Give is not a comedy for anyone under 50 years old. In fact Holly and I were the youngest people in the theater by at least 20 years. It was like we wandered into a secret AARP meeting. This is not to say that the 60-something romantic comedy isn't funny. It has it's moments and ultimately stacks up to any of the romantic sappy throwaways that Nora Ephron has ever dreamed up. It's the kind of movie you can enjoy once and then forget about it forever.

The film is filled with such high wattage stars that it is somewhat difficult to separate their real life personalities from their characters. Some reviewers have mentioned this in the negative but I believe that the casting was purposeful as the roles seemed to have been inspired by the very actors who inhabit them or at least the characters or characterizations that they are famous for. Jack Nicholson as an old guy who dates much younger women but never settles down? Not too much of a stretch. Diane Keaton as a brainy eccentric writer/intellectual? Where have I seen that before?  Keanu Reeves as the handsome guy? 

Nicholson plays 63 year old ladies man Harry Sanborn who travels to his recent girlfriend Marin's family beach house to consummate their relationship. Before they get a chance to use the Viagra, Marin's mother Erica (Keaton) and her aunt Zoe (Frances McDormand) pop in and interrupt. Hilarity ensues. Erica is appalled but soon comes to fall for Harry herself as she nurses him back to health after he suffers a heart attack during an unrealized romantic pairing with Marin. She uses the situation with Harry as inspiration to overcome the writer's block for the play she is crafting. As she explores her feelings for Harry she also entertains the affections of a much much younger man who happens to be Harry's doctor and Keanu Reeves. The story ends in Paris with Erica on her birthday making a tentative decision between the two suitors. 

If you've seen the previews for this movie then you have seem most of the best (funniest) scenes. There's a bit of fun at the hospital after Harry's heart attack where we see him drugged up and stumbling, bare assed, around the halls. This later becomes a major scene in Erica's play. There's a funny scene where Erica's menopausal emotion shifts take control during a successful and productive writing jag. Other than that you've probably seen all the other funny moments on the TV commercials. 

If you liked Sleepless in Seattle or it's redundant twin You've Got Mail then you will enjoy this film as well. It's a great date movie for the Geritol set.