May is waiting for her boyfriend in a run-down American motel, when an old flame turns up and threatens to undermine her efforts and drag her back into the life that she was running away from. The situation soon turns complicated.
Harry Dean Stanton
Based on Nikolai Gogol's story with the location changed from Russia to Italy and the time changed to the present (1952), the story is about a poor city-hall clerk (Renato Rascel) whose ... See full summary »
Ivan Bibic returns to his Pittsburgh PA suburb after surviving a Japanse POW camp, causing regular nightmares. All the time he remained faithfully devoted to his childhood love, fellow ... See full summary »
Architect Peter Ibbetson is hired by the Duke of Towers to design a building for him. Ibbetson discovers that the Duchess of Towers, Mary, is his now-grown childhood sweetheart. Their love ... See full summary »
New York City. Melvin Udall, a cranky, bigoted, obsessive-compulsive writer, finds his life turned upside down when neighboring gay artist Simon is hospitalized and his dog is entrusted to Melvin. In addition, Carol, the only waitress who will tolerate him, must leave work to care for her sick son, making it impossible for Melvin to eat breakfast. Written by
Jon Reeves <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The song "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" was written by Monty Python's Eric Idle as the ending melody for the 1979 "Life of Brian." It has become a favorite in the UK for footballers and even funerals. See more »
When Carol pulls over Melvin's Saab convertible so she can get the full story from Simon the top is up when she pulls over. In the previous scene it was down. There is no way the top could go up at in that short amount of time, and not at the speed she was traveling at, without damaging it. Also, they pull over next to an iron gate with a stone base; although the base of the wall is as high as the car when it pulls over, the gate itself can be clearly seen at eye level during the interior car shots, as can a tree or what might be a stone divider in the gate that is not present as the car pulls over. See more »
[after Carol arrives at Melvin's apartment in the middle of the night]
I'm not going to sleep with you! I will never sleep with you, never, ever! Not ever!
Well, I'm sorry, but, um... we don't open for the "no sex oaths" until 9am.
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In cast credits dogs are credited as: Verdell - Jill Supporting dogs - Timer, Billy See more »
This movie is bizarre because, while judged overall its story is shmaltzy and unbelievable, nevertheless each individual scene plays absolutely convincingly and feels very real. It's weird. I don't know if it's just the greatness of the actors overcoming an under-thought out script, or whether it's just the script concentrated solely on crafting great scenes one after the other, but not so much in coming up with a convincing through-line. Whatever. All I know is that this is one of the most entertaining pictures I've ever seen, extremely funny and quite emotionally affecting in places. Somehow, it just doesn't matter - I like it anyway.
The performances are uniformly excellent. Nicholson shows real range here - sure, he gets to be the sarcastic curmudgeon we've all come to expect, but his character also has moments of fear, repression and vulnerability which he brings off equally well. My problem with this character (and the "problem" only exists as I think about him afterward, not while I'm actually watching the movie) is in his conception: he seems to be whatever the writers want him to be at that moment, with no particular consistency from scene to scene so when he supposedly "changes" at the end, we're left to think, "Change? This guy's been changing through the entire movie!" And also, the fact that his character is a romance novelist is never really explained or examined in any way.
And yet, Nicholson's performance makes it not matter quite so much.
Helen Hunt is a revelation in this movie - she nails every scene she's in, whether she's forced to be witty, embarrassed, angry, defiant, emotionally overwhelmed, whatever. She keeps Jack on his toes, and they work off each other brilliantly. Also, I never thought I'd find myself saying this, but Greg Kinnear was great as Simon, the gay neighbor. (It was also nice to see director Harold Ramis - the third Ghostbuster, after all - in front of the camera again, if only briefly, in a small part as a doctor.)
What more can I say? Good comedy, good love story, great acting. None of it, in the end, is very convincing, but if you just focus on the individual moments and not on the grand design - a task made easy by the wonderful writing and playing - it's very easy to like As Good As It Gets.
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