Reviewer's Rating 2 out of 5   User Rating 4 out of 5
Something's Gotta Give (2004)
12aContains infrequent strong language and moderate sex references

Something's Gotta Give in Nancy Meyers' conservative romantic comedy, starring the Oscar-nominated Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson. Turns out it's the comedy, as this May-December tale for the Calendar Girls set proves more formulaic than an algebra exam. The intriguing set-up - an ageing lothario falls for his girlfriend's mother - is frittered away by a funereal pace, lack of strong gags, and shameless sentiment. Keaton and Nicholson's tear ducts are the only things given a serious workout here.

Jack plays unreformed womaniser Harry Sanborn, a 63-year-old who's earned the tag "The Escape Artist" for his ability to avoid the "marriage noose". In the Hamptons to seduce 30-year-old girlfriend Marin (Amanda Peet), his plans go awry when her award-winning playwright mom Erica (Keaton) appears on the scene. And that's the least of Harry's problems: a heart attack makes him realise that it's not just Viagra which can make him stiff.

Squeaky clean doctor Julian Mercer (Keanu Reeves - surely the least convincing medic since Joey Tribbiani's Dr Drake Ramoray) recommends some R&R, with Erica reluctantly roped in to help. Romantic complications inevitably ensue, not least because the hot doc is also keen to demonstrate his bedside manner to the renowned playwright.


Nancy Meyers previously directed What Women Want, but where that Mel Gibson flick had a real sparkle and wit, Something's Gotta Give has plodding melodrama, an underdeveloped scenario, and an annoying tendency to coast on the undoubted charms of its stars. Frances McDormand is underused but gets the film's funniest one-liners, while Paul Michael 'Starsky' Glaser wins the "Wait a minute, isn't that..." award for his brief turn as Erica's ex.

Meyers' movie caters to that most neglected of cinema audiences: the 'mature' woman. Shame they've been sold short by something that's as monotonous and predictable as a pacemaker.

End Credits

Director: Nancy Meyers

Writer: Nancy Meyers

Stars: Diane Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Keanu Reeves, Amanda Peet, Jon Favreau

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Length: 128 minutes

Cinema: 06 February 2004

Country: USA

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