Search This Blog

Friday, July 7, 2017

The Goodbye Girl (2004)

After being dumped by her current live in boyfriend, a single mother (Patricia Heaton) raising a daughter (Hallie Kate Eisenberg) discovers that he sublet their apartment to an actor acquaintance (Jeff Daniels). Rather than fight over who has legal rights to the apartment, they reluctantly work out a room mate situation. Directed by Richard Benjamin (THE MONEY PIT), this is a remake of the 1977 Neil Simon film. The film follows the 1977 film so religiously that Neil Simon still gets credit for the screenplay. There are a few concessions (there weren't any cell phones in 1977) but it's basically a line for line remake. The most notable difference is how Daniels and Heaton approach their roles in comparison to Richard Dreyfuss and Marsha Mason in the 1977 movie. Dreyfuss and Mason played to the balcony, hitting every punchline and wisecrack in true Broadway fashion. It worked. Daniels and Heaton (who got a SAG nom for her work here) dial it down considerably and deliver their dialog more naturally and don't feel the need to treat every line as a zinger. While it takes a bit to get used to the more natural rhythms, it works too. Eisenberg (Jesse's sister) too is less movie kid and more real life kid (though no kid in real life is that sophisticated). With Alan Cumming and director Benjamin playing a movie director.

No comments:

Post a Comment