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Heartburn (1986)

Director:
Mike Nichols

COUNTRY
USA

Genre
Drama/Comedy
NORWEGIAN TITLE
Heartburn I gode og onde dager

RUNNING TIME
199 minutes

Producer:
Mike Nichols
Robert Greenhut

Screenwriter (based on her own book):
Nora Ephron


Cast includes:

CHARACTER ACTOR/ACTRESS RATING
Rachel Samstat Meryl Streep
Mark Forman Jack Nicholson
Julie Siegel Stockard Channing
Richard Jeff Daniels
Dmitri Milos Forman
Harry Samstat Steven Hill -
Betty Catherine O'Hara -
Annie Forman Mamie Gummer -
Diana Joanna Gleason -
Della Anna Maria Horsford -
Arthur Siegel Richard Masur -
Vera Maureen Stapleton -
Eve Mercedes Ruehl -
Subway Thief Kevin Spacey -
Wedding Speaker Dana Ivey -
Thelma Rice Karen Akers -

 

Review

A mid-1980s drama directed by Mike Nichols and starring Meryl Streep and Jack Nicholson as a newlywed couple the formula sounds almost infallible. And a lot of those trivial, simple scenes which Nichols always seemed to make powerful and/or poignant work rather well also in Heartburn, at least in the film's opening third. Streep and Nicholson don't exactly set of sparks, but they each bring their screen presence and small quirks which give the early scenes life, in the midst of the plot's contrivance. Because although screenwriter Nora Ephron based her script both on her own novel as well as on her own experiences from her marriage to journalist Carl Bernstein, there's something plotted and forced about the story. It's a little too clearly Ephron's apologia. And so when Nicholson's character is reduced to a target, our sympathy with Streep's character although legitimate becomes tainted. This makes her ensuing journey to independence and hardiness a little less fun and empowering than it should have been. A lot of fine character actors appear in underused roles, but Milos Forman is quite fun, and Kevin Spacey makes a noticable film debut as a thug.

Copyright 19.01.2021 Fredrik Gunerius Fevang

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