Retro Review: What Women Want?

Written: December 18, 2000

Since the inception of man there has always been one nagging question, what is the opposite sex thinking about? Well in the new movie from Paramount Pictures Mel Gibson gets that chance.

Mel Gibson stars as an advertising executive who has a freak accident in his bathroom and gains the ability to look into the minds of the opposite sex. While Gibson is playing with his new found clairvoyance, an assertive new female executive (Helen Hunt) is moving in on his job. Can Gibson’s new gift help him learn about the female psyche and save his job? Or will he finally be the first male to actually understand the opposite sex?

In a subtle meaning filled look, Gibson can melt hearts. With each of these looks one can see why he is so appealing. I loved how the film showcased this subtle talent in some of the scenes with Helen Hunt. But for this critic it was Hunt who seemed a little lost when performing with Gibson.

She did her very best to convey her “Mad About You” comedic timing (which won her an Academy Award, snicker). In most of the romantic scenes she really never brought anything new to the material which is very sad. I mean couldn’t they have cast a woman that has more chemistry on film with Gibson. I have liked some of her performances in the past but in here she seems a little lost.

Another small problem I had with the picture was the subplot involving the daughter and only really one scene really used that comedic angle. The scene I speak of is the one where they are shopping for the prom dress. It was quite hilarious.

Placing aside the negatives, “What Women Want” is a delightful comedy that has a great ensemble cast surrounding Gibson and that in itself is a real treat to watch. I loved watching such a great assortment of female characters that are a great positive in this film. Some of that ensemble includes actresses ranging from Marisa Tomei to Delta Burke to Lauren Holly. In conclusion, I would suggest bringing your significant other to this one. I would give you a chance to get out of the deathly cold and let you have a couple hours of romance.

(3.5 out of 5)

So Says the Soothsayer.

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