WHAT WOMEN WANT [4/10]
A slick, inoffensive but unremarkable romantic comedy that has – somehow – become Gibson’s biggest ever box-office hit. He’s oddly convincing as conceited asshole Nick Marshall, a Chicago ad-executive who, after being electrocuted (don’t ask) finds he can hear women’s thoughts. This helps him in bed with a flirty pal (Tomei), at work with his bitch-on-wheels boss (the whiny, currently ubiquitous, Hunt), and at home with the adolescent daughter (Ashley Johnson) who’s staying with him while her mother remarries.
If you can’t stand Gibson, keep away – he’s hardly ever off screen, and, as the saying goes, if he were chocolate he’d eat himself. As star vehicles go, however, this one is better than most. Several scenes are surprisingly well-written and sharply directed especially those featuring Johnson and Tomei, while its good to see Valerie Perrine back as one of Gibson’s airheaded secretaries. Glowing camerawork from John Carpenter veteran Cundey helps it all tick along nicely, the overlong movie only running out of gas in the home stretch as it drifts to a slushy halt.
2nd February, 2001
dir Nancy Meyers
scr Josh Goldsmith, Cathy Yuspa (story also by Diane Drake)
cin Dean Cundey
stars Mel Gibson, Helen Hunt, Marisa Tomei, Alan Alda