Returning from Sundance is a shocking experience. For almost two weeks I got to see some of the best that independent cinema has to offer. And there were quite a few films this year I did not like. Because I Said So makes me think I may have been a little too hard on some of those films. I forgot what lows a Hollywood effort could reach.
And let me preface this by saying that I actually love Romantic Comedies. My friends chastise me, but it’s true. I also believe in the young woman named Mandy Moore. She glows on screen and has proven herself as an actress in many teen efforts. But even Mandy wasn’t enough to make Because I Said So watch-able. I wonder what the target audience of this film is. It seems to me that only a post mid-life crisis woman could possibly enjoy this film.
Diane Keaton plays an old single mother named Daphne, who can’t keep herself from meddling in her daughter’s non-existent love life. Mandy Moore plays Milly, a young woman who has the worst luck in the romance department. And we’re supposed to believe that someone who looks like Mandy Moore can’t find a faithful guy (yeah right). Daphne writes a personal ad in hopes of finding a good man for her daughter, and sets her up unknowingly. Milly suddenly becomes involved with two men, and she is unsure of which one she likes more. And we all know that the guys will eventually find out about each other, and Milly will eventually discover her Mother’s set-up. Havoc will ensure, everyone will have words. But fear not, in the end we’ll have a formulaic Jerry Maguire moment where the guy she wanted takes her back after a big fight in an impromptu group scene. Barf.
Because I Said So is filled to the brim with cliche sequences where women hang out and chat about life. Sometimes they are at the spa, sometimes they go shopping. Karen Leigh Hopkins’ sharp dialogue screams out “look at me, I’m so cute and clever.” Every scene is a movie cliche. If someone carries in a cake, you know where it’s going to end up.
A scene where Moore and Keaton discuss orgasms (do Mother and daughter really talk like this to each other?) is more disgusting than funny. Because I Said So should be avoided at all costs.
/Film Rating: 3 out of 10
Directed by: Michael Lehmann
Written by: Karen Leigh Hopkins, Jessie Nelson
Starring: Diane Keaton, Mandy Moore, Gabriel Macht, Tom Everett Scott, Lauren Graham
Genres: Romantic Comedy (or so they claim)
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sexual content including dialogue, some mature thematic material and partial nudity.