Must Love Dogs

"Very Good"

Must Love Dogs Review


Hollywood overexposes young starlets, from Lindsay Lohan to Scarlett Johansson, and puts distinguished veterans on pedestals. Yet the industry has no idea how to handle an actress once she reaches her late thirties or forties. Lacking suitable offers for mainstream parts, these talented ladies either pour their fortunes into vanity projects (Salma Hayek in Frida), turn to lower-budget independent fare (Holly Hunter in Thirteen), or dabble in primetime television (The Shield lures Glenn Close, and Teri Hatcher is reborn as a Desperate housewife).

A recent trend finds older but still attractive actresses downheartedly treading water in the dating pool for the benefit of a far-fetched plot. Heather Locklear played a flighty single mom unlucky in love for Hilary Duff's The Perfect Man. Now Oscar-nominee Diane Lane is taking her turn in the barrel with improved results.

Eight months after her bitter divorce, Sarah (Lane) sifts through her large Irish family's misguided matchmaking attempts and wonders aloud if she'll ever find love again. With unsolicited assistance from her older sister, Carol (Elizabeth Perkins), Sarah posts a profile to an Internet dating website and enters a steady stream of social disasters. Two suitors gradually rise to the surface: smarmy but outwardly nice Bob (played by smarmy Dermot Mulroney), and intense but ultimately decent Jake (John Cusack).

Writer/director Gary David Goldberg, a sitcom scribe with M*A*S*H and The Bob Newhart Show on his resume, mines a Claire Cook novel for small, steady, and consistent laughs. His breezy and light charmer is sentimental and blessed with a heart. Dogs also makes some soft comments on cyber dating through Stockard Channing. Initially interested in Sarah's father (the smooth Christopher Plummer), she gets caught in a pinch after fudging the facts on her own dating profile.

Since they grace the poster, we know Lane and Cusack are meant to mate, though the two share a minimal chemistry that's slow to form. We almost have more fun when the main couple is apart and interacting with their supporting players. Cusack's on cruise control, not sinking to sleepwalking level but hitting his marks with the casual stride of someone who's explored this territory before. His shuffle stands out in contrast to the nimble juggling act managed by Lane.

Goldberg throws in filler for his final frames to keep his leads apart longer and prolong the inevitable. Mulroney returns, Sarah endures a few more bad blind dates, and we patiently wait. Even vehicles on autopilot eventually reach their destinations, though, and Dogs proves to be an easy ride.

Must not love dogs that much!



Must Love Dogs

Facts and Figures

Run time: 98 mins

In Theaters: Friday 29th July 2005

Box Office USA: $43.8M

Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures

Production compaines: Warner Bros. Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 35%
Fresh: 51 Rotten: 95

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Sarah Nolan, as Jake, as Carol, as Bill, as Bob

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.