“No Reservations” –
Catherine Zeta-Jones, Aaron Eckhart, Abigail Breslin, Patricia Clarkson
This is a remake of a French film I had previously seen and loved. I do think the French did a better job, more character development and plot depth but then most American audiences prefer shallower film experiences and focus on the star power. Zeta-Jones is appropriately distant and unifocused as the chef of a celebrated NY restaurant. When her sister and niece are in a car wreck on their way to visit and her sister dies, she is appointed guardian to her niece. Clearly her grown up life doesn’t suit the school age Zoe and it is up to the playfulness of Eckhart’s Nick to reconnect Zoe to her new life. Eckhart is a total scene stealer. No matter how unshaven, he is dreamy! Not sure what the appeal with Zeta-Jones’s Kate is, while she is lovely to look at, she has the warmth of a snow pea. Nick is a delightful romantic, sensitive to the needs of all, and wonderfully grounded. I’ll see anything with Eckhart as I truly feel is has an amazing breadth of talent. Breslin is going to go far if she doesn’t burn out in childhood. Clarkson was an excellent casting choice as foil to Zeta-Jones.