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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

What Women Want (2000)



Reviews and Comments

What if a man could hear women think? This fluffy bit of romantic comedy takes this basic gimmick and runs with it. The results are more satisfying than one might expect. Mel Gibson is fantastic in the lead role, and Helen Hunt has just the right kind of intelligence and stability called for here. Besides its fine sense of humor, this movie also has a variety of subplots that work nicely together to bring about changes and revelations in Gibson's character. (Many movies of this type throw in subplots that serve no more purpose than to fill time, but that is not the case here.) What Women Want is funny but also gentle and moving. It's unusual for a film to strive to hit so many notes and succeed across the board.

What do women want? The film wisely never hammers in some trite moralistic message that, once realized, solves everyone's problems. People are both simpler and more complicated than that. But maybe what women want is more or less what men want, and it's only what men think they want that seems so different.