BECAUSE I SAID SO
Daphne Wilder (Diane Keaton) is a single parent who has raised three daughters: stable psychologist Maggie (Lauren Graham); sexy, irreverent Mae (Piper Perabo) and insecure, creative Milly (Mandy Moore), who always falls in love with the wrong guy. Daphne is especially protective of Milly, the youngest, and puts an ad online to find her the perfect man. Among those she interviews, Daphne meets wealthy, successful architect Jason (Tom Everett Scott) and free-spirited guitarist Johnny (Gabriel Macht), who are both keen to date Milly. But when Milly discovers Daphne has set her up, she loses her cool.
Review by Louise Keller:
A light-weight comedy about mothers and daughters, Because I Said So is a bit like the chocolate soufflés that Mandy Moore's Milly cooks throughout. It's light and fluffy, but on occasions it does not rise to the occasion. Never mind that the film is formulaic and predictable, this energetic chick's flick has plenty of good intentions, before being strangled by hyper-active hysteria. Director Michael Lehmann over-directs his excellent cast and in particular Diane Keaton's well-intentioned Daphne, who flaps her arms non-stop, as if a giant bird getting ready for take-off. The premise is fun, and the film delivers some laughs, but plays like a frenetic sit-com.
Daphne is like a mother hen, who fusses around her brood. She has very definite thoughts about the right kind of guy for Milly, who in many ways is just like her. That is the problem, and Daphne is adamant that Milly will not make the same mistakes in love, that she herself did. Instead of keeping the film grounded, the script takes everything a bit too far. The sequence in which Daphne interviews potential dates for Milly, is played for laughs, as we meet a montage of weirdos. We immediately warm to Gabriel Macht's likeable and good-looking guitarist Johnny, who echoes Milly's easy-going spontaneity, although it is clear that Daphne favours Tom Everett Scott's well-to-do, but somewhat stuffy architect Jason.
The complications of Milly simultaneously dating both Johnny and Jason inevitably come to a head, as does Milly and Daphne's relationship. I liked the madcap scenes when Daphne and her three daughters shop together, laugh together and are pummelled for a Korean massage together. The development of Milly's romances is nicely paced, too. But it is as though scriptwriters Karen Leigh Hopkins and Jessie Nelson were trying a little too hard to pack too much into the film, resulting in Diane Keaton landing a few too many cream cakes on the chin, and an ending that is downright silly.
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BECAUSE I SAID SO (M)
CAST: Diane Keaton, Mandy Moore, Gabriel Macht, Tom Everett Scott, Lauren Graham, Piper Perabo, Stephen Collins, Ty Panitz, Matt Champagne
PRODUCER: Paul Brooks, Jessie Nelson
DIRECTOR: Michael Lehmann
SCRIPT: Karen Leigh Hopkins, Jessie Nelson
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Julio Macat
EDITOR: Paul Seydor, Troy Trakaki
MUSIC: David Kitay
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Sharon Seymour
RUNNING TIME: 101 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Magna Pacific/Dendy
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: May 3, 2007