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2004 Mini Reviews

Something's Gotta Give (2003)

Something's Gotta Give
Directed by Nancy Meyers
Starring Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, Amanda Peet, Keanu Reeves
Running Time: 128 minutes

Harry (Nicholson) is one of the worlds most eligible bachelors on the planet, and he never dates his age. He happens to be dating Zoe Barry (Peet), when their weekend party is crashed by none other than her mother, famous playwright Erica Barry (Keaton). She is repulsed by Harry, but agrees to share the place with him for the weekend. Harry's heart, however, feels otherwise, as a slight heart attack keeps him confined to the house indefinitely ..

The first two acts of Something's Gotta Give are excellent, mostly thanks to Jack's natural charisma (he was only playing himself after all). Both he and Keaton had amazing chemistry, which was was nice to see as the relationship slowly developed. There were also several great comedic moments. It was beginning to look like a much better than average romantic comedy.

When Act 2 was over, the movie seems like it will follow suit and end shortly. Not so. It continues and the plot gets even bigger. At some point it transforms itself from a light romantic adventure between Nicholson and Keaton, into a film about Nicholson's own self-searching and Keaton's emotional instability. This could have worked if it had 1) retained the same excellent writing as the first half, 2) not been so overacted, and 3) been about half as long.

As for the acting, I expected a strong performance from Diane Keaton after all the critical raves, but I was extremely disappointed. I expected it to be a good performance at least, but no, it was horribly overracted. None of her performance appeared genuine, and while some of it might not have been intended to be so, I'm certain that the rest did. Jack Nicholson delivered a charming performance, but he essentially just played himself. We all know Jack's charisma and love him for it -- he's just an entertaining guy to watch. Jack's personality mostly carried the film, but overall wasn't enough to save it.

Score: 5/10