February 14, 2009
Review - " I Could Never Be Your Woman " - (on DVD) By Roland Hansen
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I Could Never Be Your Woman *** 1/2
Directed by: Amy Heckerling
Starring: Michelle Pfeiffer, Paul Rudd, Saoirse Ronan, Stacy Dash, Fred Willard,
Jon Lovitz, Tracey Ullman
Set in LA, the film stars Michelle Pfeiffer as Rosie, both a successful TV sitcom
producer in a cruelly youth-oriented industry and a recently divorced mother
raising her adolescent daughter Izzie through puberty. Rosie uses her daughter as
a litmus test for a teen sitcom called "You Go Girl", which seems like a cross
between "Saved by the Bell" and "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air". In a casting call,
she meets the boyishly charming Adam (Paul Rudd), and sparks inevitably fly
despite an age gap of at least fifteen years. Naturally, complications ensue when
Adam becomes a breakout star. Moreover, throughout the story, Rosie's
conscience shows up in the scabrous form of Mother Nature (Played by Tracey
Ullman) who is lightning-quick with her "I-told-you-so" invectives.
Amy Heckerling brings forth a delightful romantic comedy centred around the
romance between a younger man and older woman. But what makes this one
different is the director's treatment. Heckerling's 'I Could Never Be Your Woman'
follows the same style of her 'Clueless'. What I liked about the comedy is that the
humour is quite dry and that goes very well with the mood and situations of the film. Unlike most recent movies of this
genre, it does not heavily rely on slapstick or vulgarity. It is pretty much comprised of all kinds of comedy like satire, a bit
of slapstick, innuendos, symbolism, visual jokes and wit. The whimsical soundtrack gives the movie an upbeat feel.
Heckerling gently presents themes like people's obsession with youth, plastic surgery, looks mattering more than
personality and talent.
Paul Rudd gives a natural and hilarious performance. Everything he does is funny. Rudd is very funny much funnier than
I remember him from anything else he's done and Michelle Pfeiffer is perfect as the sexy, and somewhat insecure love
interest. The daughter/mother relationship was also really well done - the daughter being smart, just precocious and
innocent enough without being too artificially sweet which was very hard to pull off. The dialog in the film is clever and
witty but light and self-parodying along the lines of Clueless. Pfeiffer's daughter who's an enchanting Beverly Hills 13
going on 23 type, is played by Saoirse Ronan, a talented young woman who is breaking out in a big way. Ronan does a
Brittney Spears parody that just shouldn't be missed. I laughed so hard I had to rewind and watch it again (and I laughed
just as hard the second time). The eternally hot Stacey Dash plays the spoiled starlett bimbo very effectively (I can't
believe she's actually 40 and yet she so right for the part). Jon Lovitz and Tracey Ullman are brilliant respectively as the
image obsessed ex and the angry Mother Nature. But the real star here is definitely Paul Rudd, who has proved to be
one of the funniest guys around right now. And I must say that all of the cameo appearances and mentions of such an
array of celebrities really added that little something to this script.
The chemistry between Michelle Pfeiffer and Paul Rudd is undeniable. Pfeiffer is a true movie star, a brilliant actress and
shamefully underrated comedian. And I would imagine that this film will likely be Paul Rudd's star-making vehicle. He's a
I also liked how the actors portrayed the relationships between the characters. It really comes across as authentic,
natural and sincere. For example, the scene where Rosie and her daughter play with Barbies, Adam 'acting around' with
everyone, Nathan's obsession with looking young, Rosie arguing with Mother Nature. Izzie's versions of 'Ironic'...these are
all very genuine, clever and funny ideas and it is these little things that make 'I Could Never Be Your Woman' a unique
The mini Clueless reunion of Paul Rudd, the ever gorgeous Stacy Dash and Shawn Wallace (back in a teacher role) was
a fun ride.
Slapstick, cerebral, puns, visual humor, industry in jokes, innuendo, and satire, even Woody Allenesque in Tracy
Ullman's Mother Nature running commentary. I cannot remember that last time I watched a film and laughed out loud so
often and at so many different types of comedy.
"I could never be your woman" is quite simply one
of the best comedies of 2007 - romantic or
otherwise. It's difficult not to be enthusiastic given
the wit and chemistry of the script, the actors, and
the crew. Irreverent, yet old fashioned, trend
setting, yet comfortably familiar, this really is one
of the most enjoyable films to be seen: an
outstanding comedy, and if I am raving about it,
it is because it deserves it.
This movie is a winner. Overall, a very sweet and
funny movie - I haven't enjoyed a romantic comedy
this much since "When Harry Met Sally" or
"Sleepless in Seattle". A real film and a real
cinematic experience: kudos and thanks to all