Americas Sweethearts (2001) - Review

by - January 03, 2019

Synopsis: In the midst of a nasty public breakup of married movie stars, a studio publicist scrambles to put a cap on the escalating situation as the couple’s latest film has found it’s only print kidnapped by the director

Hollywood's Hottest Couple Just Split Up. It'll Take More Than Special Effects to Reunite Them.

Eddie (John Cusack) and Gwen (Catherine Zeta-Jones) were once Hollywood's power couple, both on screen and off until Gwen fell in love with another man. Now Kiki (Julia Roberts), Gwen's personal assistant and sister, and Lee, a movie publicist, must work to convince the media that the stars are working towards reconciliation in order to sell the last movie the two stars filmed together. Things get a tad bit complicated when Eddie and Kiki's friendship takes a romantic turn.

The film has its issues but I don't think it ever attempts to take itself seriously which makes it easy to enjoy. There are some fun cameos (Alan Arkin spouting New Age-y nonsense) and Christopher Walken's brief turn as Time Over Time's quirky director is worth suffering through Hank Azaria's horrible accent/speech impediment (though 'eet's beeger than coins' is still something I quote to this day).

Gwen's overly narcissistic movie star is just the worst (I say that with affection), Eddie is a heartbroken mess addicted to holistic drugs (he claims he's paranoid schizophrenic) and Kiki is the long-suffering sister in love with her ex-brother in law. Everything and everyone feels like a rom-com caricature, but to me, the movie is funny enough that it works and honestly, it's pretty self-aware. When Eddie declares his love for her and Kiki asks what's next, he responds with 'Traditionally, we kiss'.

I'm not sure I would have liked this as much had it been anyone but John Cusack and I did love his chemistry with both Julia and Catherine. The cast made the movie entertaining more than anything else. I was a bit bummed that Seth Green's clueless publicist seemed to disappear halfway through the movie though. Also, Stanley Tucci is a bonus here.

Starring: Julia Roberts, John Cusack, Catherine Zeta Jones, Billy Crystal, Hank Azaria, Stanley Tucci, Christopher Walken
Directed by: Joe Roth
Rated: PG-13
Watched: 11.24.2018
Fun Facts:
- Julia Roberts was offered the role of Gwen but turned it down in favor or Kiki.
- Robert Downey Jr. was initially set to play Eddie, but his legal troubles raised doubts of his availability.
- Lee's assistant is John Cusack's real life sister, Ann Cusack.
- Billy Crystal had originally written the role of Eddie for himself, but by the time the film was made, he was too told and Joe Roth convinced him to play Lee instead.
Notable Song: Some Hearts by Kelly LeVeque

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