Life As A House (2001)
Main cast: Kevin Kline (George Monroe), Kristin Scott Thomas (Robin Kimball), Hayden Christensen (Sam Monroe), Jena Malone (Alyssa Beck), Mary Steenburgen (Colleen Beck), Mike Weinberg (Adam Kimball), Scotty Leavenworth (Ryan Kimball), Ian Somerhalder (Josh), Jamey Sheridan (Peter Kimball), and Scott Bakula (Officer Kurt Walker)
Director: Irwin Winkler


My first thought about this movie was to check the credits on my DVD box. Hey, how come Neve Campbell's name is not on the box when there, right there, wearing the Mascara from Hell, is Campbell herself!

Hubby taps my shoulder and says in a terrified voice, "I think that isn't Neve Campbell but a guy."

Oh my freaking googly, it is not only a guy, it is Anakin Skywalker himself, sporting a mascara disaster from hell! Hayden Christensen and a mascara don't go together at all.

This very clichéd movie is so unbearably sappy by its final reel that I am surprised Life As A House doesn't come with boxes of Happy Sunshine Tampons. It is interesting to watch Kristine Scott Thomas prove me wrong by playing very well a non-ice queen role for once, but this overearnest love and sunshine movie tries too hard to wring emotions from me.

Kevin Kline, one of the most underrated sexy guys in Hollywood in my opinion, plays George Monroe, your typical carefree, unmaterialistic type who wears sexy briefs to bed and pees into the sea right in front of the neighbors. How nice that this guy can live in what is best described as a trailer home and can still get the best view outside his window. Only in movies, I tell you. When he learns that he is dying of cancer, just like how this movie is dying from the cancer that is cliché, he decides to patch things up with his inexplicably whiny son Sam and whaddya know, win back his ex-wife Robin as well. (Because we women love men with no financial stability - keep dreaming, guys, and yeah, one day we babes will ditch Mr Millionaire for you - keep dreaming, losers.)

George is wise. He is the Mahaguru of Daddyhood. Funny how a tumor can turn a mere bum into a demigod, eh? Everybody helps George build a house and everyone fights against zoning laws, because We Are Supposed To Be Free To Pee Into The Sea And Be Rude To Our Neighbors. Every woman, from nurse to ex-wife, wants George bad! Guys, Irwin Winkler has the Truth at Hand: Have Cancer, Have Respect.

Many Hayden fangirls swear that this movie is his Tour De Force. Well, since this is his - what? Second, third movie? Anyway, it's too early to tell, and just like how he is whining as Anakin Skywalker, he is also whining the same way in this movie. And remember that "wet dream" moaning and groaning scene in Attack Of The Clones? Here he is moaning and groaning after a, er, shower accident, and yes, he moans and groans just like that as well. I don't think "Hayden Christensen" and "range" will be showing up in sentences on this website anytime soon.

Sappy and predictable with very little attempt to give any characters here any depth, Life As A House could use a life of its own.

Rating: 71


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