Indications are that Diane Keaton may be fastening her trademark neck scarves a little too tightly since her Oscar nod for Something's Gotta Give. She must've been suffering from a lack of oxygen, or (more likely) a choice of good scripts when she signed up for Michael Lehmann's romantic comedy Because I Said So. Playing the overbearing 'mom' to Mandy Moore's flaky baker creates so many teeth-gritting scenarios that older women may just watch it to save money on Fixodent.
Cringe from the opening minute when a semi-naked Milly telephones mom Daphne to celebrate the fact that she's just about to have sex with someone she's quite possibly related to. Unfortunately (?) the tryst goes nowhere so Daphne takes the liberty of advertising her daughter's availability on the internet. She picks wealthy bachelor Jason (Tom Everett Scott) to sweep Milly off her feet whilst Milly is, of course, unwitting of the fix-up. On top of that, she's already dating humble guy Johnny (Gabriel Macht) who didn't pass mom's eligibility test.
"LAUGHS ARE IN SHORT SUPPLY"
Because the characters are painted in broad strokes, it's a foregone conclusion which of the men Milly will choose. There's little intrigue and the laughs are in short supply too. Keaton does her ditzy slapstick shtick in an attempt to distract from these shortcomings, but it is futile. At times Daphne is simply annoying, while Milly comes across as selfish and spineless - opting to date both men simultaneously. Towards the end, the spectacle of Milly faking an orgasm for her mother's edification is, frankly, enough to kill anyone's hopes of romance.
Because I Said So is released in UK cinemas on Friday 16th February 2007.