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What Women Want

"What Women Want " on DVD

A Man's Hand Book?

by Johnny Bray

Every guy on Earth would like to know what women want.

Unfortunately, the problem lies in the fact that half the time, even women don’t know what they want.

One day, Nick Marshall (Mel Gibson) has a fortunate accident in which he is given the power of hearing what women are thinking.

“I’m talkin’ real personal stuff; the stuff we’re not supposed to hear,” says Marshall.

Well duh. If we were supposed to hear it, they would say it as opposed to think it. Of course, we are somehow supposed to know exactly what they’re thinking anyway. And if we don’t know, they’re not gonna tell us.

The movie starts off pretty well. Gibson plays a perfect chauvinist, and it’s during the beginning that most of the laughs come about.

But it seems that as soon as Marshall gets his gift, it becomes a typical romantic “comedy”. Okay, now and then you chuckle, but not enough to make you thoroughly enjoy yourself. Not only that, but the plot becomes the same as any other romantic “comedy” made in the last century.

Basically, man sees woman; man realizes he’s in love with woman; man screws up and loses woman; man searches far and wide to find woman; woman doesn’t want to have anything to do with man; man convinces woman to change her mind; they live happily ever after.

Why is this the format for every romantic comedy? Really, the only difference between movies of this genre is how the man and woman meet.

And sometimes, even that’s the same.

Anyway, this movie follows the format to a T. Sometimes it’s funny to watch Mel when he’s listening to women and reacting to what they’re thinking, but it gets tired after a while.

Aside from that, the subplot about Mel and Marisa Tomei only takes time away from the story. And you never find out what happens to Tomei after her fling with Gibson is over.

The subplot with Mel and his daughter is also clichéd. Daughter thinks dad is a loser; dad tries to show daughter he’s cool; daughter thinks dad is lamer than before; daughter has bad experience with boyfriend; dad comes to the rescue; dad cheers daughter up; daughter thinks dad is the best.

What Women Want, admittedly, isn’t all that bad. As long as you’re not expecting to laugh yourself stupid at a completely original concept, you should probably enjoy it.

Especially if you’re a woman, or in love with Mel Gibson (or both).

The movie is anamorphic, which is always a plus, presented in English 5.1 or Dolby Surround, or French Dolby Surround. Audio and video quality are very good. There are two theatrical trailers, cast and crew interviews, behind-the-scenes footage, and a commentary by Nancy Meyers & Jon Hutman

What Women Want, from Paramount Home Video
126 min. widescreen (1.85:1) 16x9 compatible, Dolby Digital
Starring Mel Gibson, Helen Hunt, Marisa Tomei, Alan Alda
Written by Josh Goldsmith & Cathy Yuspa, Produced and Directed by Nancy Meyers.


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Updated May 13, 2006