Starring: Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, Keanu Reeves
Director: Nancy Meyers
Running Time: 128 mins
Something’s Gotta Give is an American film about an old playboy and an ageing playwright who, despite their differences, begin to develop a strong bond after he is forced to stay at her house after a heart attack.
For a film that, at the outset at least, looks like a bit of Hallmark movie with an A-list cast, I was pleasantly surprised by Something’s Gotta Give. Though not the most enthralling romantic comedy ever made, the film counts on wonderfully charismatic lead performances and an enjoyably lightweight atmosphere throughout, proving a thoroughly entertaining watch.
There’s a lot to like about Something’s Gotta Give, but it’s those lead performances from screen legends Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton which really make the film soar. The pair’s acting talent is unquestionable, but even in lighter roles such as these, they really do knock it out of the park.
With Nicholson playing up some of the same comedic sensibilities he showed in As Good As It Gets, and Keaton reviving her effortlessly lovable romantic lead roles from the likes of Annie Hall and Manhattan, there’s not much that can go wrong with these two hitting it off on screen.
And although Something’s Gotta Give does occasionally get a little muddled as it introduces side plots and secondary romances alongside the lead story, the chemistry and charisma of Nicholson and Keaton makes them an irresistible pairing throughout, who you really want to see get together despite everything.
Sure, the story does follow a bit of a generic will-they-won’t-they arc, and it’s fair to say that the final act is a little abrupt in its resolution of their topsy-turvy romance, but the film lends such tenderness to both their characters that you’re also interested in how they develop as individuals as well as the fate of their love story.
Nicholson’s transformation from a wooer of young women to a more mellow, calm personality is delightful to see, and it’s also wonderful to watch as Keaton comes out of her shell throughout, with the pair’s differences thawing gradually as they grow closer together.
Coupled with sweet, lightweight comedy that means the romance never gets too unbearably sappy, Something’s Gotta Give proves a really rather charming watch throughout, with likable characters, touching emotional drama and two dynamite lead performances. So, that’s why I’m giving the film a 7.4 overall.