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Tag Archive 'Nancy Meyers'

Apr 25 2009

What Harry Sanborn can Teach us about Some Single Midlife Men.

Published by under Culture

By the end of Nancy Meyer’s movie. Something’s Gotta Give, the lead character, Harry Sanborn, Jack Nicholson’s character, shows promise of finally being a mensch, a man of honor who can be trusted. We don’t know if he’s there yet, but he’s there enough that when Erica opens up to him again, at the end, we aren’t afraid for her.

When I was in Rome I saw the statues of Greek Heroes. Seven feet tall. Enough larger than life to be heroic, but close enough to human scale that I could relate and feel cowed. Harry is like that, just bigger enough than life to carry a movie, but close enough to people I’ve known, including, me.
Before the midlife wake-up call, a charming, and immature guy.

When we meet Harry, he’s a sixty year old guy who has perfected an adolescent male’s dream. He’s got the money, the power, the fame, the car, the pad and the impossibly gorgeous trophy women. The fact that he’s as much a trophy screw for the women as they are for him doesn’t bother him. It’s how he likes it.

I had a chance to see a pre-shooting script of the movie and the planned opening had him speaking about being afraid to grow old and a cruel fantasy about him being seen with a woman his own age. I liked the final cut better. It opens with him musing about mature young women at the height of their sexual powers and him uniquely positioned (to coin a phrase) to sample the batch of them.

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