Bye Bye Love (1995)
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The three main characters are divorced dads, each with their own trials in dealing with the ex-spouses and their teenage and young children. My favorite is Randy Quaid, although he is the most bitter. The scene with "Our House" cracks me up everytime I see it; "Go Red Sox" and of course, "The Date." Matthew Modine portrays the ever insatiable Playboy; he, his kids and his Ex, Amy Brenneman, all have some great lines. And last, the longingly in denial and reluctantly divorced Dad, Paul Reiser, aka the "BIRTH FATHER."
*SEMI-SPOILER* In response to a comment posted by Sherlock regarding the "Mickey D's worker and the old guy sub-plot," the old guy is a father with his grown children far away and the young guy has no father in his life; basically, they are both lonely and forgotten people who find their mutual needs help each other remedy their unhappy situations.
Definitely a feel good movie, see it for Randy Quaid, if nothing else.
But every time I catch this movie replaying on one of the movie channels, I just can't switch away. I guess it appeals to me because it does many things well. Bye, Bye, Love has strong, well-developed, interesting characters. It has comedy, romance, and tension. It makes good use of music and includes some great familiar tunes. The acting is superb. And it paints a pretty realistic picture of what it's like to be a divorced parent in modern America (I assume) while being quite entertaining.
I'm surprised this movie hasn't gotten more attention as it remains one of my all-time favorites.
SCENE SPOILERS; if you do not wish to find out too much about
this movie, then please DO NOT READ.
This film is often billed as a comedy on television, but in fact this is
not entirely accurate. People often associate comedy with films
such as "Airplane!", or "Hot Shots", but anybody looking for this
kind of humour is going to be a little disappointed. "Bye Bye Love"
simply tries to bring the subject of divorce, with all the benefits and
the costs it can have, in a comical fashion, admittedly, but it does
not let the production be ruled by laughs and gags. In fact, it is
doused with only a sprinkling of laughs, particularly in the middle
of the film itself.
The film itself is also incredibly effective at relaying the message it
brings, and leaves the audience with some doubt as to whether
divorce is the answer to an unhappy relationship - but it also
enforces that it is not the end of the world.
When the jokes do come in, to relieve some of the tension in the
film, they are usually quick and simple, and all the cast deliver with
skill. The real star of the show, however, has got to be Randy
Quaid (Vic), who plays a spectacular performance and brings out
the best comical content in his scenes, particularly those involving
his wife's porch, his date (played by Janeane Garofalo, a good foil
against Quaid) and his reactions to Dr. David Townsend (played
superbly by Rob Reiner).
In all, the film tackles some important issues about married life
and the problems that can happen, without ever taking itself too
seriously, and in the end, it's hard to say how the film might have
All three friends seem somewhat adjusted to their new realities. Vic, looks as the most grounded man of the trio. Donny, is the saddest case, and Dave, who is a wishy washy man, is trying his hand at a new relationship with a much younger woman. The wives, on the other hand, have moved on with their lives. The three women appear to have no problems with their new status.
The exchange of children occurs in a suburban McDonald's, a neutral territory. This is a type of "brand placing" that Hollywood films love to show. Fast food, alas, stands for an allegory of what's missing with most marriages these days when most families don't even share a meal together. There is also the talk radio personality who is in the air taking calls from divorced people and advising them what to do, yet, he doesn't even have a clue about what he is talking about; after all, he's been married five times!
The acting is adequate. The best thing in the film is Randy Quaid, who as Vic, makes the most of his role. Janeane Garofalo appears as a date from hell, in a funny sequence. The ensemble cast does fine work under Sam Weisman's direction.
The sad fact of this story is that all these children, we see in the film, will probably go through divorces in their own lives.
Great casting from the Radio Psychologist (Rob Reiner) down to the last little kid.
Randy Quaid is one actor that usually needs tempering in his roles.....but not this one. He managed to be outrageous, testosterone laden, and rough-cut without sacrificing the depth of his character.
This was also the first movie in which I'd seen Janeane Garofalo (aka "The Date"), and I immediately added her to my list of favorites. I've since rented several other of her films, all of which I've enjoyed - especially "The Truth About Cats & Dogs".
Also keep an eye out for Mae Whitman ("Michele") - She needs a little more seasoning, but someday this kid is going to have "Oscar-winner" in front of her name.
A thoroughly enjoyable film.
It was hard to feel much empathy for the "victimized" children of divorce here. "Ben," the screen son of Matthew Modine's character, needed his butt torn off and his mouth nailed shut in my opinion. And "Emma," the screen daughter of Paul Reiser's character, was nothing but a spoiled, miserable brat. She could have used a trip on the clue bus to the land of reality.
Randy Quaid's kids were actually kind of cute. Maybe because Randy Quaid's character was more believable as a father than those of either of his co-stars.
"Bye Bye, Love" stars the TV star, Paul Reiser, as a guy who divorced his wife for reasons we never really know... and he is still in love with her. Matthew Modine plays an always smiling (never acting) "charmer." Randy Quaid plays another odd character that never is well developed because the movie has too many plots and characters to really focus on anyone in particular.
One thing that sickens me about this movie is how much blatant advertising is done within it. Off the top of my head, I remember Kettle Chips, Minute Maid, and last and certainly not least, McDonald's. I bet MickeyD's patroned the entire movie, to show that divorcees should meet there every weekend to trade their kids, seeing as the divorce rate in America is over 50% of all married couples. What a demographic to hit for! I never heard of people meeting at fast food restaurants to exchange their kids for the weekend before this.
Next thing, Eliza Dushku hitting on the guy who works at McDonalds? How realistic is that? Yes, I realize all of you Buffy fans that she is "Faith" but it doesn't make up for the fact that her character was undeveloped and weak. For example, when she gets drunk and screams at her father and says all of that typical "i broke up the marriage" crap... where did any of that come from? We are given no clues as to why she's angry except for Reiser's "that age between 13 and 36" quote.
The chronology in this movie was hard to follow, too, because most of the scenes played independent to the others, while going back and forth between the 40 stories going on. The music montages added to the story, making it even worse than it already was. The lovely "wrap-up" at the end really made the story feel like it ended at a very awkward place. The climax was very... semi-climatic. Quaid's character is a rollercoaster of uncertainty. He's not a dynamic character... he's a schiz. So is his lovely date, Garafolo.
This movie doesn't give insight as to what men are going through after a divorce... it gives what women want men to be like. I would only recommend this movie to people who want to be brainwashed by Dr. Laura-esque psychology and the mesmers at McDonalds.
This is a truly likable, wonderfully enjoyable, fun movie with enough comedy to make it laughable, but enough perspective to make a someone examine the roles of a family before and after divorce.
This movie is a true keeper for our family. We watch it about 3 times a year.
Highly recommended in my opinion.
Granted, 'Bye, Bye, Love' is harmless entertainment with several anecdotal family or relationship moments strewn throughout. But let's keep it in perspective, folks. It's not garbage, but this is no 'Parenthood' or 'Author, Author' either.
This movie may hit home only if you view life from the perspective of a pampered, 14 year-old middle to upper-middle class teenager who learned about life from TV. It is chock full of one-dimensional caricatures of married life, divorce and parenthood. It rarely mimics real life unless you've lived your adult life at the maturity level of teenage relationships and priorities.
Grab your wife or girlfriend, even the kids (it's pretty safe), maybe some snacks and sit together for a couple hours of diluted, Reader's Digest-style family entertainment. Expect nothing more.
I must agree with others that the scenes involving the characters of Janeane Garofalo and Randy Quaid are priceless, standout comedy treasures, but wasted in a film about adults acting like children acting like adults.
Still, the script was decent, and the acting was fairly solid. It was better than most movies of it's kind and I must shamefully confess to having laughed a few times. Overall, it was a good movie with a good script and good actors; it's just a shame it was centered about such pedestrian and urbane material.
The date scene in the restaurant between Quiad and Janeane Garofalo is so poorly written as to be embarrassing. She was the date from hell that could not make up her mind about what she wanted to order and by the time the scene ended I was so exhausted I wanted to scream. Janeane Garofalo character served no useful purpose except to irritate the audience. She was poorly mis-cast.
Stay single guys***
This has to be the longest product placement(Mcdonalds)in film history