Times have been tough for cinematic singletons. Debra Messing had such a hard time finding a companion in The Wedding Date, she had to hire a male escort. Heather Locklear had to move from city to city in search of The Perfect Man. And now Diane Lane is forced to look for love on perfectmatch.com. What is Hollywood coming to?

We nonfictional single gals have found camaraderie and sympathy in these fictional singlehood depictions—and yet we've also found despair. When Debra Messing, Heather Locklear, and Diane Lane can't find love, what chance do the rest of us stand?

Thankfully, Diane Lane, in her latest romantic comedy turn as newly divorced Sarah Nolan, is allowed to have wrinkles, messy hair days, and a wardrobe that includes nondescript jeans and sweaters. The realism is refreshing. As is a love story not centered solely on the 20-something set. Instead we have jaded 40-somethings taking their first tentative steps toward loving again—mostly pushed by their nosy family members, friends, coworkers, deli counter guys, and manicurists.

In fact, the opening scene finds Sarah being ambushed at a family gathering; each family member has brought a photo of a potential love interest. It's only been eight months since her divorce, but they think it's high time she move on already. When she tosses all these suggested suitors in the trash, her pushy sister (Elizabeth Perkins) creates an ad for her on perfectmatch.com. Cue the parade of freaky single men sporting everything from tears to toupees.

But there's one cyber suitor, Jake (John Cusack), Sarah meets in a dog park (with her brother's hulking dog, Mother Teresa, in tow) who shows some neurotic glimmers of hope. And then one of Sarah's preschool students turns out to ...

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Must Love Dogs
Our Rating
2½ Stars - Fair
Average Rating
 
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Mpaa Rating
PG-13 (for sexual content)
Directed By
Gary David Goldberg
Run Time
1 hour 38 minutes
Cast
Diane Lane, John Cusack, Elizabeth Perkins, Christopher Plummer
Theatre Release
July 29, 2005 by Warner Bros.
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