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Overall Rating

Awesome: 18.57%
Worth A Look41.43%
Average: 38.57%
Pretty Bad: 1.43%
Total Crap: 0%

7 reviews, 28 user ratings

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Return to Me
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by Erik Childress

"Perhaps The Sweetest Film of the Year"
4 stars

Sometimes a film can skate across the recommendation scale just by being purely likable. There is not a mean bone to be found anywhere near Bonnie Huntís directorial debut. Even the eventual break-up scene (the storm before the calm) is sweet and low-key.

The usually boring David Duchovny (who talks so low so often he could have played the little kid in The Sixth Sense) is right where he belongs Ė in a light romantic comedy. He plays Bob, a Chicago architect happily married to a beautiful zoologist. The film gets off to a rather long introduction where everyone, you guessed it, is happy. That is before a rather abrupt tragedy occurs Ė something I thought would be very hard to recover from in terms of tone. But Bonnie Hunt somehow pulls it off, flashing forward a year (to a point where most romantic comedies would have begun) to where Bob is now a single man, and actually a tiny-bit bitter, constantly trying to be set up by his good friend, Charlie (David Alan Grier), a co-worker of his late wife. Bob agrees to meet him at OíReillyís Italian Restaurant, where he ends up on one of those annoying movie first dates that makes you either hug the one youíre with or glad to be single. Itís here where Bob meets Grace (Minnie Driver), a lovely young woman with a new lease on life after a heart transplant. And itís here where the movie starts to find its heart as well. Thereís an instant attraction and soon everyone is happy again. The way Bob and Grace conduct their romance is refreshingly old-fashioned. They go out, he hangs with her friends and family, and in a lovely moment, even asks her if he can hold her hand. We know where all this is headed. There are no great plot twists or surprises along the way and as long as a film can keep me laughing good and regularly, I donít mind so much. And the laughs come through the grand variety of good actors up and down the cast. Duchovny proves, once again, that his low-key approach best works in comedy. His appearances on The Larry Sanders Show still remain a career high. Minnie Driver is an extremely appealing actress with a smile that can put everyone at ease. Her main objective here is to remain charming and that she does. Carroll OíConnor plays Graceís grandfather in a wonderfully sweet performance, 180 degrees from what most will remember him forever as Ė TVís Archie Bunker. Bonnie Hunt is becoming a full time pro at playing the best friend/sister role, and there are few who can do it better. Itís also nice to see Jim Belushi rescued from straight-to-video hell in the kind of funny supporting role that he perfected in About Last Night way back in 1986. Every scene heís in is hysterical with Hunt and himself maintaining perfect comic chemistry and husband and wife.

Return to Meís worst crime may be thatís itís just too innocuous. This is the kind of overly sweet material that can make some people sick. Romantic comedies are easier to digest in this case. The good laughs make it easier, and the romantic sappiness that kills most romantic dramas doesnít really come into play here because the romance in light comedies is part of a fantasy where we expect a happy ending. Return to Me was a pleasant experience, funny and sweet, and a nice journey to the ending we know is coming. I may have the heart of a cynic, but itís still a heart.

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originally posted: 04/10/00 06:04:49
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User Comments

6/17/18 Anne predictable 3 stars
3/01/17 Suzanne such a sweet movie; one of my favorites 5 stars
1/08/09 Rachel minnie driver and david duchovny had great chemistry! 4 stars
1/18/06 cody a touching film that was very well acted and it sentimental movie that hits your heart hard 4 stars
11/13/04 Jennifer One of the best EVER 5 stars
9/14/04 tatum Wonderful, and very funny 5 stars
7/18/03 Chris This is my favorite movie ever. I've seen it 47 times in two years. A masterpiece. 5 stars
4/16/03 JL This is a very good, sweet movie, with some really funny parts thanks to Hunt & Belushi . 5 stars
5/16/02 The Skating Peppercorn Yodelers A bit too quirky, but leads are at their most charming. 4 stars
5/15/02 Blake This movie was sad but awsome! 5 stars
12/30/01 Sara best film that I have ever seen! 5 stars
8/25/01 hilary pretty bad 2 stars
8/13/01 Lucie B Sweet,romantic and funny. Duchovny is charming the entire cast is just great. 4 stars
6/05/01 Psyko Doug Good story, good acting, the old men are hilareous. Not a chick flick- a good movie. 5 stars
2/11/01 Melanie Perera I loved the innocence and simplicity of their relationship 5 stars
12/19/00 natasha I want Bonnie Hunt to star in her movies! 4 stars
12/12/00 Nikki Laughed & cried....great movie 5 stars
10/26/00 Pearl Loved this movie 5 stars
8/15/00 rosangela Adorable film. David Duchovny is superb! 5 stars
8/06/00 Belinda Seen it all before, get the video or wait for Foxtel. 3 stars
7/10/00 Andrew J. Not a classic, but quite good. Can we get more movies from Bonnie Hunt please? 4 stars
5/06/00 Katsat Sweet, enjoyable movie. Funny, touching & entertaining.My hubby liked it, too. 4 stars
4/18/00 Linda I thought it was a great feel good movie. I also think it was a great vehicle for David D 4 stars
4/13/00 mrhide it's a chick's flick 3 stars
4/10/00 Malbert I thought I was going to hate this...I loved it, it was too cute! 5 stars
4/05/00 Pat A film with heart. Sweet and innocent. Hilariously funny. Great performances by all. 4 stars
2/19/00 Andi C. A good date movie 4 stars
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  03-Aug-2000 (M)

Directed by
  Bonnie Hunt

Written by
  Don Lake

  David Duchovny
  Minnie Driver
  Carroll O'Connor
  Robert Loggia
  James Belushi
  Bonnie Hunt

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