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Heartburn Reviews

Two name talents in leading roles don't guarantee success, a point proven all too clearly with HEARTBURN. The film is based on the Ephron novel detailing her marital break-up with journalist Carl Bernstein; but although the book had a distinctive bite, the film is a colorless adaptation. While attending a friend's wedding, Streep, a divorced magazine writer, is attracted to Nicholson, an important Washington, DC, columnist. Nicholson begins to woo Streep almost immediately; and within five minutes of film time, the two are getting married. Streep quits her New York job to move to Washington, but gradually Nicholson somes to feel stifled by the marriage. HEARTBURN features some good individual moments from Streep and Nicholson, but there's no spark between the two, and that missing element is one of HEARTBURN's major flaws. In adapting her own novel Ephron deemphasized much of the original's acidity, perhaps because Bernstein demanded (and received) the right to approve the way he would be portrayed in the film. This deflected any potential lawsuits HEARTBURN could have incurred but resulted in a work that just doesn't live up to the personal turmoil its title implies.