One Fine Day (1996) Poster


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Charming, delightful, fun and clever; "One Fine Day" is a hit!
In "One Fine Day" Jack Taylor (George Clooney) and Melanie Parker (Michelle Pfeiffer) meet when their children miss a school field trip, and after much bickering they finally agree to take shifts in watching their kids. Over the course of the day they run into countless mishaps and misadventures, and come close together, to understand each other in a sort of non-romantic romantic way.

The first time I saw "One Fine Day" it was 1996 and I was seven years old. I didn't like it. I found it tedious and boring. Now I'm fourteen, and I just finished watching, and I love it? I get all the jokes I didn't get now, all the clever one-liners spoken with a bright, witty confidence that is reminiscent of Frank Capra films.

And clever they are! I have to say, when you subtract a few (very few) somewhat cheesy lines from the script, it becomes perfect. I'd go as far as to say Oscar worthy. Yes, you may think its cheesy that Jack's a famed newspaper columnist bringing down a mob member and the mayor, and Melanie's an architect working on what we imagine is a multi-million dollar deal with big businessmen, but the way it's presented is not that it makes sense, it's that you don't care. And that's not the focus of the film either, the movie would rather be about the minglings of the two leads.

And I have to say, Clooney and Pfeiffer have great, perfect chemistry. Clooney is his usual cool, intense self whereas Pfeiffer is an uptight, worrisome hard worker. They play off each other perfectly. It's not just their chemistry either, their performances stand alone as emotional, funny and smart. I'd go as far as to call Pfeiffer's Oscar worthy.

The style and direction in the film is also notable. There are split-screen conversations, some long steadicam shots, the whole placing of the camera fits perfectly with the light-hearted nature of the film.

A fun, witty, lovable family film, 7.5/10.
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Not all romantic comedies are created equal!
Nobody-2716 October 2004
I would probably never decide to watch this film, had it not been for my wife who rented the DVD. Just like many others, I expect romantic comedies to be all the same - usually terribly unrealistic (talk about suspension of disbelief!) as in the Pretty Woman, and the humor to be 3rd grade.

But, One Fine Day, surprised me in many ways! First, it is not "I need insulin right now!" sweet. Also it is surprisingly relevant for today's world, and not targeted at teeny boppers.

One Fine Day is a film with a very smart script, funny dialogues, beautiful acting, directing, and it all gels well together. Most of the moviegoers today expect blood, gore, darkness of warped minds, and it seems that films which don't have that have a hard time getting a good review. It is time we step back, and enjoy some of the subtleties of life and people, and laugh at ourselves, when it's all presented in a believable and funny way.

The film takes us through "one fine day" of a single mother and her son, and a single father and his daughter. Due to his error, they miss their kids field trip and are, reluctantly, helping each other out take care of kids. While he obviously likes her but has a problem with trusting again, and a questionable flirting tactics, she is more obviously shell shocked and uses every opportunity to put him down. In a single day they both go through so many humbling episodes that the relationship develops from "I already have an opinion about you..." and "So do I..." to "I'll help you out if you say: 'Be my knight in shining armor...'"

The control freak named Melanie and played wonderfully by Michelle Pfeiffer, manages to stay likable even though she "beats every miserable bastard that comes her way to pulp". George Clooney has an easier time being liked as he is his pretty much usual self, and that's exactly what the character requires. Both kids were much better then I would normally expect them to be; I am always put off by artificial adult gestures and "too cool for you" acting of today's kids in Hollywood films, and expected that this time it would be the same, but it was not.

The humor in this film is subtle, and you may actually miss it altogether if you expect things to blow in your face. I loved those brief encounters between Melanie (Pfeiffer) and Celia (Amanda Peet) in which a beautiful perfectionist with a heart (Pfeiffer) meets her less polite match... Amanda Peet was also fantastic! Just notice how Pfeiffer's facial expression changes when she realizes who she's talking to. Another one to watch and enjoy is the episode with Melanie's boss.

Also, this film can be watched more then once, as there is a lot to appreciate about it.

ps. A scene at the shrink's office made me laugh like never before!
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Just occasionally, Hollywood still lets us have a grown-up entertainment ...
philipdavies21 August 2003
The headlong screwball comedy of this breakneck romance of two stressed-out single parents is a delight from beginning to end. It has scenes as quick witted - and often as wackily off-kilter! - as the adults must be just in order to survive their average day. Stir love into this mess of two increasingly desparate modern lives and you get a miraculous souffle of a film, at once sharp and sweet.

No scene is laboured, no point is telegraphed, and - phenomenally for a modern American film - neither kids nor kittens are allowed to smother the audience in the nauseous layers of cutesiness that are usually applied. The scene with the analyst, where Clooney must obscure his account of his sex-life in an ever-more-surrealistic periphrasis involving iced cakes and fish, since his little daughter has to accompany him into the presumably crecheless analyst's surgery, and her dad is embarassed to expose her to such adult matters as he is obliged to reveal during the session, is a scene which is a model of intelligent and stylish comedy writing. The dialogue of both himself and his analyst finally founders on the increasingly strained comparisons and metaphors being attempted. The analyst begins to construct an alarmingly kinky lifestyle for his client out of what he takes to be Freudian suggestions - but which are, as noted, merely the product of old-fashioned seemliness - whereupon Clooney is forced to bring the whole towering edifice back down to earth when his version of the morning's business with the goldfish gets mixed up in the heady brew of symbolism: 'No. I mean fish. You know - 'Fish' fish?'

The humour is all good, never strained, and beautifully played by all the principals, including the wonderfully un-sentimentalised children. The transformation, stage-by-stage, of the harsh mutual competition and resentment that exists at first between these harassed adults, into an exhausted truce, by way of barely-restrained irritation, grudging gratitude, reluctant respect, and growing affection, is handled with considerable dramatic finesse throughout.

To produce the unlikely union of such an ill-assorted pair under such utterly unpropitious and unromantic circumstances is a comedic challenge of considerable proportions, and the makers of this film do an excellent job to bring it off at all. The spirits of Grant and Hepburn - even Beatrice and Benedict - are not too far away.

The only disappointment is to see how many people in the audience have gone home just as sour as when they arrived, judging from some of the comments here. But then, love curdles in any mean-spirited breast.

One particularly admires the fact that, at its conclusion, the film's romantic clincher - when the tired-out couple have to settle for just falling asleep together, despite their by now clearly desparate need for each other, - insists upon the importance of exactly this: Love, rather than merely lust, as the basis for an adult relationship.

Just occasionally, Hollywood still lets us have a grown-up entertainment. It makes a pleasant and wholesome change from the usual fare of adolescent dreams.
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How this film should be appreciated
rfysh8 March 2004
This film is one of my favorites. I absolutely love it. I'm not entirely sure why i just find it really sweet and the two stars are both perfectly charming throughout. I used to have this on in the background whenever I did homework. Maybe I was just at that age when I was starting to appreciate romance when I saw it in the cinema (3 times) but I still feel this is one of the best romantic comedies I've ever seen and would definately recommend it to anyone. It's a great shame that a gem like this is so underrated. ALL of the acting is suberb. George clooney is entertaining as always in this film he made whilst it was still being debated as to whether he could transcend tv and become a movie star.
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For once, a throwback which doesn't grate
Sean Gallagher28 April 1999
When movies of today try and capture that "old-fashioned" feeling, usually it's the "values" that they're trying to recapture, forgetting that if you don't make a good movie, what you're left with is two hours of preaching. This movie, on the other hand, may be trying to capture that "old-fashioned" feeling, but the values it's after are the values of craftsmanship and intelligence, two things rarely seen in comedies these days. Oh, yes, and chemistry; Clooney and Pfeiffer have it in spades here. The fact that it's set among the world of working parents and, for the most part, tries to get the details right, also helps. And, oh yeah, it's funny. It is a little cloying at times, and the end feels abrupt, but overall this is a pleasing movie.
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medea_argos5 February 2001
I saw this on a Sunday while doing laundry, thinking that it was a good way to waste time at my inlaws, and instead found a truly enjoyable comedy. I have read reviews that call it "predictable yet enjoyable", yet, I find it reminiscent of the screwball comedies of Hollywood's past, extremely funny & unrealistic & realistic all at the same time. I can think of no better way to spend my one day off a week with my husband than including a movie like this into our plans.
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Not too sweet and some good humor in it.
Philip Van der Veken2 December 2004
I always expect the worst when I will see a romantic comedy. It's all very much the same, ultra sweet and incredibly predictable. One Fine Day does confirm this, however it isn't as bad as most of the movies in the genre. It's actually a quite enjoyable and funny film.

Michelle Pfeiffer and George Clooney did a very good job playing two people who are divorced, with a child, afraid to commit to someone else and with a hectic life. One day, they accidentally meet at the school where their kids go to school and during the day they keep meeting, however they hate each other and don't want to see the other ever again. But as the movie progresses, the relationship between the two changes from hating each other, to liking, to ... (this is a romantic comedy, I don't have to explain everything I hope).

Even though some parts aren't excellent, the entire movie is actually quite good and enjoyable. It shows a lot of stereotypes of course like the ex-husband who doesn't want to help his ex-wife when she drowns in all the work and who needs him to take care of the kid, the man who still seems to act like a little child... But when you can see past that, it's an excellent movie to watch together with your wife or girlfriend. You'll both enjoy it. I give it a 7/10.
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One fine movie !!!
fofml13 April 2000
Okay, I LOVE romantic comedies so this is probably not too objective but... gee, I loved this movie. It follows an old formula that has worked so many times and that is still working: 2 people who can't stand each other at first happen to spend some time together and eventually find each other attractive. This requires 2 main things: 1.) Two great actors with wonderful chemistry 2.) An original and funny script We have seen this in so many movies like 6 Days 7 Nights with Anne Heche and Harrison Ford or You've Got Mail with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan or recently in The Runaway Bride with Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. I loved all these movies for they simply worked to charme me. One Fine Day fits perfectly to this list. George Clooney ( who proves that he can be a very funny guy) and Michelle Pfeiffer ( who gives a great performance in this movie) have very good chemistry and the script is very funny and romantic with some really great one-liners. This movie entertained me very much and it wasn't boring as I saw it the second time. For it's charme and fun, I give this movie 9/10.
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A very fine movie in every way
Amy Adler28 February 2005
Jack (George Clooney) is a divorced journalist with a daughter named Maggie. When his former wife goes on her honeymoon with husband number two, Jack is left in charge of Maggie, something that does not occur very often. He has instructions to pick up a classmate of Maggie's but fails to arrive on time. Nevertheless, Jack does meet up with the boy and his mother, Melanie (Michelle Pfeiffer) at the school. All of them have missed the bus to the class field trip. Melanie is miffed and she and Jack have it out. However, during the course of the day, they will need each other and meet again at various times. Will Melanie stay angry with charming Jack forever? This adorable movie will be an enduring favorite for the next century and beyond. The two stars are so gorgeous and the youngsters playing the children are huggable beyond words. The plot is a string of funny encounters between Jack and Melanie, at the day care center, at the ice cream parlor, at a soccer game and more. Are you looking for a top of the line romantic comedy to vanquish the blues? Look no further, this is it!
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good enough
Special-K8818 March 2002
Pleasant romantic comedy stars Pfeiffer and Clooney as two divorced, overworked parents whose children are bickering classmates. They meet, and don't exactly see eye to eye, but then circumstances force them to put aside their differences and try to help each other out as they struggle to balance their job priorities with their parental obligations, all during a hectic day in New York City. Predictable setup made worthwhile by two very appealing leads, believable situations, and well-drawn characters. Youngsters Whitman and Linz are especially likable as the two children who reluctantly get dragged from one place to the next. ***
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One Fine Romantic Comedy. - SPOILERS
MovieAddict201621 August 2003
Warning: Spoilers
"One Fine Day" is classic, reminiscent of an old Cary Grant movie, modernized and updated. But the basics are always basic. Two people meet and fall in love in a big city, and they have a miserable time doing so. They don't realize they like each other until the end where they embrace in a passionate kiss.

If that doesn't sound too fun to you, there's the comedic side to the film. The two leads are played by Michelle Pfieiffer and George Clooney, who seems to be filling in Mel Gibson's shoes in an otherwise well-suited role. Clooney plays Jack Taylor, a divorced newspaper reporter for the New York Daily News. Pfieffer plays Melanie Parker, a busy working mom whose job has something to do with architecture.

Both parents have kids. As always, there is a boy and girl, and the male (Clooney) has a daughter, Maggie (Mae Whitman), and the female (Pfieffer), has, of course, a little boy, Sammy (Alex D. Linz). Is there a mathematical law in cinema that makes it mandatory for a member of a certain sex to have a child of the opposite sex?

After missing their children's school trip, both parents are left taking care of the kids. Melanie has an important job interview at 2:00 p.m., so she makes a deal with Jack: He watches both children until 3:00, and she'll watch them for the rest of the day (since he has to get a column for the newspaper written which supposedly takes an hour).

Why do romantic films always make the leading man have a hard-pressing job, usually as a reporter, and the leading woman have an even harder-pressing job? We never fully grasp what Pfieffer's job really is, but we know it must be very important, otherwise she wouldn't need to be running around to job meetings all day (which, coincedentally, she never really seems to be at - she's always in a cab or walking along a busy street blabbering away on her little 1996 cell phone).

"One Fine Day's" alternate title could have been "Cell Phone Tag," because basically the two leads just walk around all day on their cell phones. Other hilarious segments include a child getting a marble stuck up his nose, the two parents constantly losing their kids, and other such humorous adventures.

But the interaction between Pfieffer and Clooney seems real enough. They throw punch lines and verbal digs back and forth, and we suspect that any minute one of them will jump through the other end of the phone, slap each other, and then embrace passionately. We know they are going to get together, we sit and wait and sit and wait, just waiting, and the film drags on just about twenty minutes too long - and then they finally kiss as the kids watch "The Wizard of Oz" in a nearby bedroom, and then she goes to freshen up, and when she comes back he is asleep on the sofa, and so she falls asleep next to him, and then we pull up towards the night view of a backlit New York City with the image of two children watching their parents asleep on a sofa, giggling and laughing. The first thing I thought/pondered is Those kids look up to no good, they're probably going to take their parents' credit cards and order gallons of ice cream and stay up all night watching R-rated movies. I guess I'm naughty.

3/5 stars -

John Ulmer
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Charming, throwaway romantic comedy..
broosr17 March 2002
A charming if forgettable romantic comedy aided immeasurably by two attractive leads. Michelle Pfeiffer is irresistable, although at this period in Clooney's career his range was precisely one character deep, and he played that same character whether that role was Batman or any other. Lately, however, he's broadened out with roles like O Brother, Where Art Thou? But he's pleasant enough in One Fine Day and clicks with Pfeiffer in a way that keeps your attention. Rather recalls Neil Simon, and if you enjoy movies like Seems Like Old Times, you'll enjoy this one.

Film buffs will note a few appearances here by actors who would join Clooney later in O Brother, Where Art Thou.
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Syl21 June 2012
I had to watch this dreadful film on a bus ride. It's supposed to be a sweet romantic comedy with George Clooney and Michelle Pfeiffer but the film just falls short. They're both single parents in New York City and they are having the worst day or the best day. The film's writing is weak and the actors don't do anything for me. The film is really bad in my opinion and I can't stand George Clooney at all as obnoxious jerk of a Daily News reporter, Jack Taylor. Michelle Pfeiffer does better as an architect, single mother. The supporting cast is excellent except they're just acting their parts. The film is a lame attempt to talk about single parenting in the city. The supporting cast has Holland Taylor as Melanie's mother just like her role as Evelyn on television. Ellen Greene is barely recognizable as Elaine Lieberman but does a nice job. Charles Durning is wonderful as always as Jack's boss. Sheila Kelley plays Jack's ex. Pete Hamill, a well known New York City reporter, plays a New York City reporter by a different name. I don't know why they just didn't let him play himself. Pete Hamill is a New York City institution. Anyway, the film was done a few years before events changed New York City forever.
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A great movie
tonytharakan200019 February 2004
I am speechless. This one is a classic movie, and I have no words to describe it. I wish they would make more movies like this one. Michelle Pfeiffer is brilliant as usual and George Clooney, the right choice as co-star.
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Rotten Spoiled Kids, Absurdly Indulgent Parents (and this is supposed to be funny?)
wulfstan8 October 2014
If you don't happen to be from that segment of the population like its producer Lynda Obst who finds misbehaving children who ruin their clueless parents lives cute, this movie is like finger nails on the blackboard.

The plot has more cliff hangers than the entire TCM DVD collection of film noir... each one dumber than the last, as a hapless pair of single parents try desperately to save their careers and meet the schedules and recreational activities of a pair of spoiled moppets as well.

The parents deserve everything that happens to them, and for once, the worst thing imaginable is that the meet cute couple get together in the end. And they DO... .

They will make one another's lives sheer hell!

And that IS hilarious!
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Delightful surprise
anirban-iimc20 February 2007
One fine day is one movie which me and my wife saw together and neither walked out till it finished. George Clooney shows why he is the most charming one around and the chemistry between Pfeiffer and Clooney explodes on screen. The movie is crisp, pleasant, witty and very lovable. Unline most other romantic comedies (serendipity and the likes), this one is utterly believable and goes easy on sweeteners. This is a day right out of a working couples life, just a lot more charming and slickly presented. It is a great watch with the loved one cuddled in a recliner with a supply of coffee on a pleasant Sunday afternoon. One place where it could have scored a little more is perhaps added more substance to the peripheral characters (Clooney's editor looked promising for an enlarged role). Overall a must see.
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A gem of a love story
elisabethdioro31 May 2002
Thoroughly enjoyable from beginning to end. What a great cast! George Clooney sure knows how to choose a good romantic comedy!
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**** out of ****.
clay-813 February 1999
"One Fine Day" has an incredible atmosphere. I loved that it was so gloomy and shady. I found this film to be imaginative as well as very funny. The whole relationship with the two parents and their kids was genuine and believable. The characters are very interesting, as well as well-developed. I enjoyed it on every level. It was sweet, kind-hearted, with an incredibly lonely and gloomy atmosphere that complemented the movie's premise nicely. And the ending wasn't as predictable as I expected. A great film.
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Luisca19 December 1998
One Fine Day is a beautiful story, because the characters are similar in details like: Melanie Parker and Jack Taylor have a child each one, careers for saving, angry bosses, and others. The scene in Rockefeller Center was very romantic when Jack tells Mel "I know your name Mel", and when they discuss on the street because Melanie lost Maggie. The best fact is the movie goes from the "hate" in the morning until the "romance" in the night on the Melanie's apartment. I'm sure this movie will be always in the mind who see that.
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fine day entertainment
s.hayley1 October 2000
This is the sort of film that leaves you in a feel good kind of mood, from the moment that little cute kid appeared on my screen i was hooked, what a good little actor! and of course there's George, what else can you say? if you have not seen this film yet, go out and rent it, you will be pleased you did.
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A heart warming comedy/drama
Id-36 September 2000
A heart warming comedy/drama reminiscent of Neil Simon's Goodbye Girl in that apparent mutual dislike, (not to say hatred), fuelled by awkward circumstances is later revealed to be love at first sight.

Not nearly as slushy as the above description suggests. The old theatrical advice not to work with children is proven false, since the cute kids in this movie, while central to the plot, do not steal the show.

At times hilariously funny. Not quite a classic but a worthy contender for the title
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This life's perfect movie.
46yroldmale25 July 2000
One day in the life of the two most watchable people on earth. And as an added bonus, each of the two have a most adorable child. The plot is wonderful, so how could anyone ask for a better movie? The chemistry between the leads works from the first frame. I should know. I own the movie (of course) and I stopped frame when they first met and the VCR nearly blew up!! Actually, I didn't do any of that stop frame non-sense, but it's a fact this is the finest romantic movie ever. Really, ever.
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Great dialogue and acting uplifts this light romantic comedy
Eve422 July 2000
I love a good romantic comedy. However, on first viewing I couldn't stop looking at my watch. The high point of the movie was Robert Klein's cameo as a psychologist, to whom Jack confides his feelings about Melanie. In front of a 6-year old, they use the funniest barrage of word substitutions since the scene from Mel Brooks' High Anxiety where a youngster sits amidst a convention of psychiatrists discussing Freud's theory of "peepee envy"!

But now, as a recent George Clooney convert, I admittedly re-watched this movie through rose-colored glasses. Both Clooney and Pfeiffer are convincing as frazzled single parents, despite the fact that neither of them were actually parents, off-screen. They also break two cardinal rules of acting: never share a scene with children or animals. But they manage to do both well, without losing audience attention, or treating the kids as wooden stage props.

Clooney wears his paternal role with a generous dose of charm and humor ... and a thin layer of dark chocolate! Contrast this with his portrayal of a bank-robbing vampire slayer in From Dusk Til Dawn, and you'll realize the range of his craft! Pfeiffer is as beautiful an actress as they get, but that asset is underplayed in this movie, as in most of her movies. They make a good screen couple; Their battle-of-the-sexes banter is perfect and on-target. There are just enough sparks between them to anticipate the denoument, which is sweet and satisfactory.

There is a lot of New York in this movie: Central Park, mid-Manhattan, the Circle Line, the Museum of Natural History. This is a wonderful light comedy for any Clooney or Pfeiffer fan.
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very sweet movie.
jinyoungc22 June 2000
very sweet movie. Michele Pfeiffer is so sweet. Any avid Michele Pfeiffer fan should not miss this movie. She plays the sweetest mom! Michele Pfeiffer is the mom that everyone wants. If you want a warm, cozy feeling inside, this movie is a must-see!
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4everDi22 November 1998
Wonderfully fun movie. George Clooney and Michelle are great in this movie. Family can go to see this.
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