Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.
USA, 1987. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Star Partners. Screenplay by Cinematography by David WatkinProduced by Norman Jewison, Patrick J. Palmer. Music by Dick Hyman. Production Design by Philip Rosenberg. Costume Design by Theoni V. Aldredge. Film Editing by Lou Lombardo.
This is the exemplary, perfectly acted, written and directed romantic comedy you’ve been looking for. It stars an outstandingas a Brooklyn widow who has decided to remarry, this time to an aging mama’s boy ( ) who flies off to Italy immediately after their engagement in order to tell his mother the good news. Meanwhile, Cher is asked by her fiance to go meet his estranged brother ( ) and invite him to the wedding. She does, and in doing so ends up feeling a lot more passionately for the brother than she ever did for the man she intends to marry. lends fantastic support as Cher’s jaded mother, a woman who offers priceless advice like “Don’t shit where you eat” and “Do you love him? That’s too bad, when you love them they treat you bad” without ever coming off as a cliche. is equally affecting as her philandering father, while the entire supporting cast contributes to a convincing feeling of actually walking the streets of New York (it was mostly shot in Toronto). Norman Jewison’s direction has never been more crisp or emotionally involving, and he gets a performance out of his fantastic leading actress that even those familiar with her acting talents could never have seen coming.
The Criterion Collection: #1056
Academy Awards: Best Actress (Cher); Best Supporting Actress (Olympia Dukakis); Best Original Screenplay
Nominations: Best Picture; Best Supporting Actor (Vincent Gardenia); Best Director (Norman Jewison)
Golden Globe Awards: Best Actress-Musical/Comedy (Cher); Best Supporting Actress (Olympia Dukakis)
Nominations: Best Picture-Musical/Comedy; Best Actor-Musical/Comedy (Nicolas Cage); Best Screenplay