(M) Universal DVD/BD
It’s Complicated makes a refreshing change from your usual twenty-something romcoms, and nobody does midlife romance better than veteran writer/director Nancy Meyers (Something’s Gotta Give and The Holiday).
A divorcee for over a decade, Jane Adler (Meryl Steep) finds herself on the crossroads: single, successful, affluent and now an empty nester — at her peak if she wasn’t entirely loveless.
Feeling slightly forlorn in her empty Santa Barbara hacienda-style mansion, Jane keeps herself busy catching up with friends and toying with the idea of cosmetic surgery.
Life comes full circle when Jane inadvertently succumbs to the charms of her cheating ex-husband Jake (Alec Baldwin), now married to the younger, wrinkle-free Agness.
In Meyer’s world, life not only has a sense of humour, it tends towards the ironic; with Jane playing the mistress and Agness this time the cuckold.
However, things start to get dopey when Jane’s architect and friend, Adam (Steve Martin), himself a struggling divorcee, begins to fall in love with Jane.
More than just an “old persons” romantic comedy as some ageist would dub it; Its Complicated gives us a light-hearted encounter with some of the isolation and alienation suffered years after a divorce. The devastation is clear in one scene as Jane admits it took her as long as “four years to feel normal again”.
Alec Baldwin seems an unlikely candidate for the romance genre, but he works well channelling the plump, insensitive, and slightly delusional Jake. Taking swipes at his own naked physique in front of his old flame sets the scene for some of the funniest moments in film.
It’s exhilarating to watch a film where middle age does not get played down as just downright depressing. In fact, it can be quite risqué and spontaneous. A scene where Steep shares a joint with Steve Martin, easing the anxiety of a first date, is the cause of many laughs and also the movie’s M rating. You were warned!
Not just a chick flick; an easy film to watch with lots of giggles for the men too.