Something’s Gotta Give

Director: Nancy Meyers

When Amanda Peet brings her sixty-three year old boyfriend to her mother’s home in the Hamptons for a carnal weekend getaway, her plans are dashed when she finds out that her mother (Diane Keaton) has arrived to work on her new play with sister (Frances McDormand) in tow. The confrontation by a trio of women proves too much for Jack Nicholson-- he suffers a heart attack, is reluctantly cared for by Keaton and the two opposites find themselves increasingly drawn to one another in typical loathe-turns-to-love romantic comedy fashion. The film has much to say about the battle of the sexes and the double standards of men and women dating people much younger than them but it all starts to get muddled when Meyers, (possibly under pressure to appease Hollywood studio bosses) decides to wrap it all up predictably in an overly long conclusion that is unsatisfying to thinking women and men alike. Of course, Jack gets Diane, realizing he’s too old to chase young skirt any longer and Diane drops her adoring, young doctor boyfriend (Keanu Reeves) without looking back so she can end up with someone more “age” (and therefore appearance) appropriate. Kudos to Meyers for allowing Peet’s character to not live up to Nicholson’s stereotypical “young women” rant near the beginning of the film. Instead of being one of the carefree and problem free beautiful trophies he seeks, Peet shows that she has her own issues, just like everyone else making her a fully realized character. It’s all brilliantly acted and some of the dialogue is smart and eye-opening but the film as a whole suffers and its greatest crime is the under-usage of Frances McDormand’s character whose dinner table theories on men and women serve as a witty look into her life as a feminist women’s studies professor and make her a character you really want to get to know—ah, who knows, perhaps she’ll be the one to land Keanu Reeves in the sequel after all!