A man who has had to mediate the incendiary relationship between his divorced mother and father for most of his life discovers that as a nine-year-old he had been one of the subjects of a best-selling book about the Children of Divorce, whose author now proposes to write an equally intrusive follow-up. It is hard to say exactly why this movie doesn't work. The actors are competent, the plot makes more sense than most Hollywood comedies, yet toward the second half one becomes imbued with an overwhelming sense of "so what". Perhaps it is because in some sense the movie has the same whiny voice as these horrendous white boy bands of the 1990s—some of their main flag bearers, if I recall, were Hootie & the Blowfish, Dave Matthews Band, Counting Crows, Gin Blossoms and Barenaked Ladies.
Just as it was hard to care when some rich kid frantically strummed his guitar while lamenting that his parents hadn't bought him new wheels for his skateboard, it's hard to care about an adult character's parents' divorce of twenty years back. There are worse problems in this world.
(Last viewed: January 2014)