One Fine Day

"Movie Magazine International" Review

(Air Date: Week Of 12/25/96)

By Andrea Chase

If Ernst Lubitsch were making films today, this is the sort of thing he'd be doing. It's funny. Seriously funny. I'm not talking sophistcated titters or a smattering of chuckles over trenchant commentary. I'm talking big, sustained guffaws. I'm talking dialogue that's sharp, witty, perfectly delivered and written for people who are over the age of reason and proud of it.

One Fine Day chronicles a day in the life of Jack and Melanie as they bravely battle more than their usual share of chaos. They're single parents who meet cute when they're suddenly stuck with their kids for the day. Naturally, it's love/hate at first sight, both of which emotions go into high gear as a bad day goes from awful to brink of catastrophe. Melanie's an architect with a kid-o-phobic boss, most of her kid's food on her clothes and today her continuting employment depends on how a meeting with THE big client goes. Jack's a reporter whose only source for an expose is backing out on him and, in the process, getting Jack fired. He's also Peter Pan looking for a Wendy but pretty sure there aren't any out there. As for Melanie, she's super-mom with too much to do, too little time and dreams of romance that went bye-bye with her ex- husband. Disaster really is the only hope these two have of connecting.

After a good look at the odds of succeding individually, they decide to split up their child-care chores, opening the door to adventures only slightly more absurd than real life would offer.

Of course this is fairy tale country complete with happy ending. If it weren't, Melanie would have killed her hyperkinetic son before the second reel and Jack would have parked his wandering daughter with any or all of the office skirts panting for him. Then there's Michelle Pfeiffer, sleep deprived, dressed in Salvation Army chic and STILL looking better than 99% of humankind. As for George Clooney, that walking pheromone, his character copes with kids AND small animals. Yeah, that would happen in real life. And it's nothing short of a cosmic miracle that when Clooney and Pfeiffer are both onscreen, the charisma quotient doesn't reach critical mass, implode and whoosh us all over the event horizon into the big black hole of gorgeousity.

The ending, by the way, is not only happy, it may be the slyest and wryest commentary yet on what people are REALLY looking for in relationship these days.

Copyright 1997 Andrea Chase

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