What Women Want (2000)

Now that I look at it, is Mel Gibson really what women want?

Advertising executive Nick Marshall (Mel Gibson) is as cocky as they come. But what happens to a chauvinistic guy when he can suddenly hear what women are thinking? Nick gets passed over for a promotion, but after an accident enables him to hear woman’s thoughts, he puts his new found talent to work against Darcy (Helen Hunt), his new boss, who seems to be infatuated with him.

The premise for this movie is what actually at first attracted me to the film (other than my undying love for Mel Gibson). But it takes something that all guys want to have the ability to do, and that is read what’s going on in chicks’ minds. This films uses that exact idea very well, and gives us plenty of funny moments, where we hear some hilarious but also true things that women are thinking.

The film is more silly than it is actually funny. The film reminded me a lot about another film, Tootsie. They both have the same idea that these guys who are total jerks start to understand how women feel and are. Hoffman, dressed up as a woman, and Gibson hearing woman’s thoughts. He hears these thoughts and really he isn’t the guy he thinks he is. People hate him, and don’t find him that attractive, which provided plenty of laughs along the way.

Though I thought the film was at times very funny, it did fail at many points. First, it clocks in at about 125 minutes, which is simply far too long for a film trying to make it as a breezy romantic comedy. And make no mistake, you will notice the pacing, especially after you realize you had to sit through two completely superfluous subplots and an entire five-minute scene that simply had no business making it out of the editing suite alive.

When Mel Gibson gets the ability to hear what women are thinking, why are we spending an entire sequence 30 minutes into the film watching him try to get rid of his dubious gift? We know he’s going to fail because we’ve got 90 minutes remaining to kill, and the scene’s not even funny to boot, a fact which is only hammered home repeatedly when he pulls the same gags that got him into this jam in the first place. That kind of sloppy screenwriting and editing doesn’t bode well.

It was a surprise to see Mel Gibson in his first romantic comedy role as he does very well with his material. He just show a lot of charm and is a guy that you want to hate, but can’t really cause of how likable he actually is. The women in the cast also are very good, as they speak from their minds and you can sort of see their reactions on the screen of what their saying, and it all seems very realistic.

Consensus: With some hilarious moments and a charming lead performance from Gibson, What Women Want shines in some places but is brought down by some choppy editing, meaningless sub plots, and a time limit of over 2 hours that is very unneeded.



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