Then She Found Me

Then She Found Me

(2008)

Helen Hunt's directing debut. A comedy-drama in which she plays a thirty-nine-year-old schoolteacher called April. April's recent marriage to immature Ben (Matthew Broderick) falls apart at the same time that her adopted mother passes away. At this time of crisis, her brassy birth mother (Bette Midler) turns up, out of the blue, and starts dating the father of one of April's students. April finds solace in the charming Frank (Colin Firth), who has recently become a single father of two.

Flicks Review

What's up with Helen Hunt? Pale and bony, she looks like she hasn't eaten in weeks. Perhaps the stress of juggling roles for her directorial and co-writing debut took its toll. Still, the end result is a mostly well-observed rom-com that is better than its so-so looking trailer would suggest.

Okay, so there's nothing in here that you haven't seen before - from bombshell parental revelations (see Rumour Has It) to telephone romance (see Elizabethtown). But through Hunt's keen eye for emotional detail and some impressively naturalistic turns from herself and her co-stars, the film stays just the right side of corny.

Surprising highlight is Brit smoothie Colin Firth who, while hardly stepping out of his comfort zone - fast quips, posho accent, big square face - does provide almost all of the film's funniest moments (Midler and Broderick are mostly just irritating). There is, however, an unresolved tension between the charming, witty side of Firth's character, and the explosive temper he displays when he looks like he's about to start beating Hunt to death in the street for having got fruity with her not-so-long estranged husband. It's a scene that jars a little in context.

Credit to the actor-director though, she clearly recognises that people come in three dimensions, and for the most part has managed to translate that to the screen. While Then She Found Me is in no way the greatest comedy drama you'll ever see, its mature, rough-edged approach gives it an appeal beyond production line fluff. That's got to be worth a celebratory pie, surely Helen?


The Peoples' Reviews

Average ratings from 2 ratings, 2 reviews
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BY Brian1 superstar

A moderately amusing, moderately capivating and moderately meaninful story.
Helen Hunt fans will perhaps be pleased to see her directing debut.


I had to turn off this movie half way through i was getting so annoyed with it. Helen Hunt as a neurotic recently seperated jewish woman with the typically portraid neurotic jewish mother really rubbed me up the wrong way. If you are american, a woman, on lots of prozac, middle aged, in need of a mildly heart warming film this may be it, but there are so many better films to watch.


The Press Reviews

50% of critics recommend.
Rotten Tomatoes Score. More reviews on Rotten Tomatoes

  • There's something about Hunt's put-upon persona that grates, and it would be nice to see her for once in a role that doesn't call on her to be so angry, short-tempered and disappointed all the time...Still, all in all, Then She Found Me is a warm, entertaining and well-made little movie and an auspicious debut for Hunt the director. Full Review

  • While this isn't a perfect directing debut from Hunt, Then She Found Me shows that the actress has promise as a director keen to capture real moments and emotions. Full Review

  • This is the sort of movie that gives "chick flicks" a bad name. It's a cross between inept melodrama and a bad sit-com. Full Review

  • It sounds generic, but what lifts Then She Found Me clear of the cliches is some uncommonly smart writing, committed characterisations and actor-friendly direction. Full Review

  • A bizarre, overcooked broth that combines a broad sitcom style (the banter goes rat-tat-tat like a steam drill) with a preposterous succession of plot complications, plus solemn questions of identity, adoption and the nature of happiness. Full Review