Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea. —Henry Fielding

07 May 2007

In the Land of Women

The first feature by Jonathan Kasdan (son of Big Chill and Grand Canyon director Lawrence Kasdan) is undoubtedly a chick flick.

I'm not gonna lie; I went to the movie to see Adam Brody. (He's so cute!) I saw Adam Brody for the first time in Thank You for Smoking and I thought he was fantastic, so I decided I wanted his movie career to succeed. Anyway, Brody doesn't disappoint. I think he's a good actor, and he makes the scenes he's in really work. The problem with the movie is the script.

In the Land of Women is about a middle-aged woman (Meg Ryan) who has breast cancer. Her daughter hates her and she doesn't understand why. And Meg Ryan's character in In the Land of Women is a SAINT. I cannot stress that enough. She does everything right. And she's amazing and caring and beautiful and she has cancer. The daughter has good in her heart and we all can see it, but no one understands why she hates her mom so much. There's no reason for it. Well, everyone has lessons to learn, certainly Adam Brody's character. But the daughter learns to love her mother, etc. etc. For some reason I am thinking of On Golden Pond all of a sudden. We've all seen this plot about a thousand times.

There is some really funny stuff—all of it due to Adam Brody's performance, which is quite good, even in a movie this sentimental. Let me also say that I kinda liked the film in a lifetime-movie, chick-flick kind of way, which is why I want to make a point to say that I am not the intended audience for this movie. This is a movie about women—specifically women of middle age. It's also rated PG-13, which means that there isn't any sex in the film. This of course makes no sense. A movie for anyone other than middle-aged women and their disobedient daughter would have had Adam Brody and Meg Ryan sleep together at least once. But that would make Meg Ryan less than a saint, and the movie is more interested in hagiography than telling a good story.

Homophobia alert: the word "faggot" is used three times in In the Land of Women. There is no explanation for this. The word felt out of place each time it was used... at least to me. Maybe I'm not used to hearing this word in movies, but I kept wondering why the writer chose this word. *Sigh* Homophobia: I don't understand.