Newest Review: ... and bearing in mind I only paid 50p for the DVD of this film, I was a little hesitant as to whethe... more
When some doors close, others open!
Then She Found Me (DVD)
Member Name: GentleGenius
Then She Found Me (DVD)
Advantages: Quite watchable, mildly humorous in places, Colin Firth
Disadvantages: Some of the humour is a bit silly, predictable in parts
RELEASED: 2007, Cert.15
RUNNING TIME: Approx. 101 mins
DIRECTOR: Helen Hunt
PRODUCERS: Helen Hunt, Katie Roumel, Connie Tavel, Pamela Koffler & Christine Vachon
SCREENPLAY: Alice Arden, Helen Hunt & Victor Levin
MUSIC: David Mansfield
Helen Hunt as April Epner
Colin Firth as Frank
Matthew Broderick as Ben
Bette Midler as Bernice Graves
FILM ONLY REVIEW
Based on the novel written by Elinor Lipman, Then She Found Me tells the story of a woman (April Epner) approaching forty, whose life is suddenly thrown off balance by the breakup of her marriage. Just a couple of days after she split from her husband Ben, April's adoptive mother dies, then on top of that and by coincidence, her TV show host birth mother (Bernice Graves) makes contact. If those things in themselves aren't enough to cope with, April and Frank (the father of one of her pupils) begin to explore their strong attraction to one another.
Life gets very confusing for April, as initially she finds the rather overbearing presence of her mother Bernice more than a cross to bear, together with being torn between still feeling attracted to her husband who keeps pestering her as he wants them to try at their relationship once more and her ever-increasing fascination with single parent Frank. Although Frank's attraction towards April is strong, he is wary of entering into anything serious, due to having been badly hurt in the past.
To find out how April's relationship progresses (or not, as the case may be) with each of Bernice, Ben and Frank, you must watch the film for yourself.
Initially and bearing in mind I only paid 50p for the DVD of this film, I was a little hesitant as to whether I'd enjoy it or not, firstly because I find the movie title somewhat suspect in that I felt it might be out of the 'romp' bag, and that's a genre I'm not too fond of unless it's very well done. I didn't pay too much attention to the DVD sleeve, e.g. the pictures and cast/director/producer information, so wasn't all that sure what to expect.
I found the first part of the film quite boring - say about the first twenty or so minutes - as it came across to me as rather soulless and I feared it would turn into a mawkish, sloppy drama.....it didn't though. Because of not studying the DVD sleeve before watching, I wasn't expecting to see Bette Midler as one of the main characters and my spirits took a tumble, as I quite frankly can't stand the woman at the best of times, but my dismay was allayed very nicely at the point when I realised the gorgeous Colin Firth was also a main character.
As far as the acting by the main cast is concerned, I was a bit disappointed with Matthew Broderick's portrayal of April's semi-estranged husband Ben, as for me he came across rather weakly and I've seen him play other parts in other films with much more gumption. Helen Hunt was good as April Epner and had cast herself well into the role of this slightly confused, unsure schoolteacher who's at a crossroads point in her life. My own personal favourite, and I say this entirely without bias, was Colin Firth as the single parent who had developed a kind of commitment phobia, yet was finding himself drawn more and more to April. There was one point in the film where Colin Firth as Frank had to express some pent-up powerful anger, and he acted that part so beautifully that I almost became scared of him. As far as Bette Midler is concerned, she came across as a slightly watered down version of how she always is.....outgoing, loud, and a bit pushy yet despite my dislike of her in general, you know there's a good heart beating under the outer veneer as there is in the character of Bernice.
Then She Found Me is marketed as a comedy drama, and I suppose that's a reasonably accurate description, although I personally found some of the comedy - which in itself is light - a little on the silly, rather contrived side. There was one point in the film which did make me laugh out loud though, and that was a remark made by a hospital doctor who was examining Elinor - and interestingly, the fairly minor part of this doctor is played by Salman Rushdie. Even if the rest of the film was fairly weak here and there, I believe it's worth watching just for that one hilarious moment, so long as you share the same sense of humour as me.
I see the whole point of the film as being one which centres around the idea that when various doors in our lives close, others burst open and it's up to us whether we choose to explore what's behind them or not.
Overall, I can't say that Then She Found Me is a strong or gripping enough film to stand proud at the top of the all-time ladder of cinematic productions, but it is a moderately enjoyable watch and apart from the first bit, isn't boring. I feel it would probably have more impact if it were split into episodes and serialised as a TV drama, mainly because I personally don't feel the production is powerful enough to stand up on both legs as a movie....there's a kind of wishy-washy weakness about it which was only allayed by Colin Firth's gutsy performance. It's not a bad film, but in its entirety, it didn't really make me stop and think too much and it did leave my head fairly quickly, having made little overall impression (apart from Colin Firth's input).
For anyone who'd be interested in watching Then She Found Me - and I'd guess it may appeal more to women than men and certainly to Colin Firth fans, but avoid it if you hate Bette Midler - the DVD can at the time of writing be purchased on Amazon as follows:-
New: from £3.84 to £22.30
Used: from £2.25 to £43.70
A delivery charge of £1.26 should be added to the above figures, and in my opinion, it's certainly not worth £43.70, especially for a used copy.
Currently, the whole movie of Then She Found Me can be viewed on YouTube in ten parts, each lasting approximately 10 minutes - that's until and if it is ever removed for copyright reasons. There are also several clips/trailers available to view should you wish to get a general taster of the film before purchasing.
Thanks for reading!
~~ Also published on Ciao under my CelticSoulSister user name ~~
Summary: Worth watching even, if only to ogle Colin Firth