161. Home Again

It’s worth noting that Home Again is the first directorial and screenwriting effort by Hallie Meyers-Shyer. The movie was produced by her mother, Nancy Meyers, who I imagine helped hone the script to make it hit all the necessary rom-com storytelling beats. Girl is confused, meets unconventional guy, they like each other, more conventional guy comes back in, girl finds out that she had the power to make herself happy all along.

Forty-year-old Alice Kinney (played by Reese Witherspoon) is confused and stuff after splitting with her husband. The younger guys she meets Harry, Teddy and George, three budding-young filmmakers in their twenties trying to break into Hollywood. Alice and Harry hook-up, and Alice later invites the men to stay in her home, an unconventional arrangement that ends up benefiting her in unexpected ways.

It’s a standard story that really falls flat. The dialogue is unbelievable, the characters are thinly-veiled and the plot situations and circumstances are simply unbelievable. The filmmakers are extremely lucky when it comes to getting their film made, like just-getting-off-the-Greyhound-now-winning-an-Oscar lucky. George is the only one who kind of seems like a person, while Harry and Teddy are just one-note. Alice herself is just plain and uninteresting, apparently a standard 40-year-old mom with no original thoughts or feelings until a man comes into the picture. Oh, and the movie is overwhelmingly white, I think I counted only two persons of diversity, an Asian woman who plays an interior decorator and an Asian man who plays a talent agency assistant.

It’s a rom-com, so take it for what you will. But it’s a rom-com that aspires to be nothing more than just a standard rom-com and it fails at that.

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