Then She Found Me

Film, Romance
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Then She Found Me
Middle age is sexy – it’s official! Helen Hunt has chosen for her directorial debut to adapt a novel by Elinor Lipman, who specialises in that tricky age. In this audacious, low-key romance, Hunt dominates as a 39-year-old New York teacher who’s saddled with a low ovum count, a ticking clock and an immature new husband.

In a film of swinging doors, husband Ben leaves and her adoptive mother dies, just as divorced Frank (Colin Firth) hoves into view, as does TV host Bernice (Bette Midler), claiming to be her mother. Hunt’s debut is a breakthrough film in the categorical sense: an awkward film on an awkward age with a central character who is, well, awkward. Hunt’s jumpy direction is arguably suited to the film’s desperately cliché-avoiding indie sensibility, but there are some disorientating elisions which mean you’re not always sure what’s going on. The performances, too – notably Midler’s – kick off in an broad register. But Hunt’s film does soften the heart, not least because of its honesty and its sensitivity to some unfashionable dilemmas.

By: Wally Hammond


Release details

Rated: 15
Release date: Friday September 19 2008
Duration: 100 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Helen Hunt
Screenwriter: Helen Hunt, Alice Arlen, Victor Levin
Cast: Helen Hunt
Colin Firth
Matthew Broderick
Bette Midler
Lynn Cohen
Ben Shenkman
Salman Rushdie

Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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A fine directorial debut for Helen Hunt... if only the dialogue and plot line were not so disappointing. In small doses, contrivances can make a story more interesting, but here Helen has us suspending disbelief on too many levels at once. I found myself groaning at the fact that Mr. Perfect: attractive, available, harmlessly neurotic (and most important - interested in her), has impeccable timing as well, showing up on the very day she would most need to be found. Then She Found Me does redeem itself in the end, however, when Helen's character, April, finally speaks from the heart. I gave this film an extra star because in that climactic scene, she eloquently reveals the truth about all close relationships, not just those that are romantic in nature.

A thoroughly irrritating film, leaving me squirming in my seat and checking out my watch.