Amy Heckerling's ill-fated romantic comedy/show business satire languished for two years before finally going directly to DVD, the victim of studio politics, bad luck, lost elements, poor business decisions and perhaps even its own subject: Hollywood's shabby treatment of older women. It's also a pretty terrible movie, whose good intentions can't overcome a weak script and poor production values.
Divorced Rosie (Michelle Pfeiffer) is simultaneously raising her adolescent daughter, Izzie (Saoirse Ronan) and writing-producing teen-oriented sitcom "You Go Girl," a schedule that leaves little time for herself. She's given up on meeting anyone, especially in a town where the relentless pursuit of youthful beauty leaves women over 35 – even stunners like herself – feeling like withered up old hags. She's so not looking for romance that she doesn't ever realize that likeable actor Adam (Paul Rudd), whom she's just auditioned for a guest spot on the show, is hitting on her. And when she does, she can think of a half-dozen good reasons to nip things in the bud, starting with the fact that he's a good 15 years her junior. But Adam persists, and she eventually gives in, even though his interests and outlook are closer to Izzie's than hers. Is there any chance that their love could work?
Rooted in Heckerling's own experiences as a single mother and executive producer of the TV version of Clueless in the 1990s, this uneven comedy announces its underlying dismay at Hollywood sexism and ageism at the outset, with a quick history of the evolution of good-old animal attraction into the modern-day obsession with plastic perfection through plastic surgery (and be warned, those images of face lifts, botox injections and liposuction are nasty). Though Rosie and Adam's intergenerational romance is the story's hook, the scenes involving Pfeiffer and the 11-year-old Ronin (who went on an Oscar-nominated role in ATONEMENT) are actually much stronger. The romantic complications are oddly unconvincing and Tracy Ullman's role as Mother Nature -- the Mother Nature – is a dismal, painfully unfunny conceit.
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