WRITTEN BY: Mark Andrus
DIRECTED BY: Rob Reiner
STARRING: Michael Douglas, Diane Keaton, Sterling Jerins
RATING: 3 stars
I doubt Rob Reiner has ever made a film because he needed the money. The director who gave us classic films including the impressive run of Stand By Me, The Princess Bride, When Harry Met Sally, Misery and A Few Good Men is obviously passionate about film and storytelling. And So It Goes is his latest project and deals with the relationship between two elderly people who form an unlikely friendship in picturesque Connecticut. It is lame in parts and nowhere near his best, but the film has the same kind of heart-warming sentimentality we often see in Reiner's work. If you want a feel-good romantic comedy about family life, And So It Goes certainly delivers.
Cranky real estate agent, Oren (Michael Douglas), gets quite a shock when his estranged son leaves a granddaughter named Sarah (Sterling Jerins), who he did not know about, in his care. Struggling with his new role as a guardian, Oren seeks the help of his lounge singing neighbour, Leah (Diane Keaton). As Oren gets to know Leah and his granddaughter, his outlook on life begins to change.
Douglas and Keaton may be veteran actors, but they lack chemistry during their more intimate moments. It is perhaps only because they are both good actors with great comedic timing that their romantic incompatibility can be overlooked. Reiner also appears on screen as a toupee-wearing pianist with a crush on Leah and he has some funny moments. Frances Sternhagen plays a real estate office assistant and is also an absolute joy to watch. In fact, she is probably responsible for most of the laughs. But it is Jerins who steals many scenes and adds some important sweetness to the story.
And So It Goes almost goes too far with its mushiness, particularly towards the end of the film, but it ultimately has an endearing message.