The level of subtitling in this film is unknown to WSC
From director Curtis Hanson (L.A. Confidential, 8 Mile) comes a film that should not be overlooked just because the phrase “romantic comedy” is attached to it. It’s romantic and it’s funny, but it’s also so much more. Honestly. Maggie (Diaz) and Rose Feller (Collette) are sisters, but polar opposites. The former is a slim and gorgeous good-time party gal, but she’s also highly irresponsible and selfish. The latter is a frumpy high-powered lawyer with a closet full of beautiful shoes she simply does not have the confidence to wear. Thrown out by her hateful step-mother, Maggie is allowed to crash on Rose’s sofa, even though she is frustrated by her sister’s antics and inability to keep down a job. However, after Maggie commits the ultimate act of betrayal, a hurtful war of words parts them. Independently the sisters take stock of their lives and set about righting wrongs and living life they way they should. When a heartbreaking family secret comes to light, fate throws them back together to see if they can finally discover that incredible bond only sisters can have.
Hanson’s directorial back-catalogue seems very testosterone-oriented but don’t be surprised to see him with this film. At the heart of all his films have been the development of human relationships and this is no different. The characters have been drawn so perfectly and the expected descent into soppy mush just isn’t there. The standout feature of the film is the performances of the leading ladies. Diaz stops Maggie being seen as a shallow brat and shows real tenderness and compassion. Collette is just as amazing, transforming physically as well as emotionally and provides one of the funniest moments of the film with a camera in bed. It’s not likely for a romantic comedy to receive Oscar nods, but it would be a real travesty if the actors and story aren’t recognised. This might seem a tad OTT but somehow Mills has created a romantic comedy that really tugs on the heart strings, but not in a shameless way, it’s tender and meaningful; a real gem.