Wednesday, August 11, 2010

As Good As It Gets (1997)

"People who talk in metaphors oughta shampoo my crotch. "

There really isn't much to say about the plot of this one, save that there really isn't one; not for the main character, anyhow. Jack Nicholson plays Melvin Udall, a mean spirited obsessive compulsive who is a successful romance novel author that never leaves his apartment. Whats interesting about the narrative of "As Good As It Gets" is that Melvin is just kind of living his life with little conflict besides his serious case of obsessive compulsive disorder. It is Helen Hunt's character or Simon (Greg Kinnear), Melvin's neighbor, who experience all the plot twists and turns in this delightful film. Ultimately Melvin desires not to be so hated by everyone around him but he has such a hard time controlling himself that merely having a conversation is difficult.

Melvin's angry tirades are what make this movie such a funny comedy and Jack Nicholson is PERFECTLY cast as Melvin. Helen Hunt's career seemed to wane after this film and her performance is fine although underwhelming. Greg Kinnear is wonderful as usual and brings such a vulnerability to the character of Simon. This film is borderline drama or perhaps even romantic comedy but when you hear Melvin go off on Simon about why to never interrupt him, you will understand why I included it here. Multiple Oscar nominations and Oscar wins helped elevate this film to a higher standard though I think many have forgotten it in recent years. Bypass the rental and pick this one up. Besides being one of my favorite comedies, "As Good As It Gets" is one of my favorite movies of all time. 4.5/5 -andy

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