Harrison Is Stranded in Battle of the Sexes; IT'S FRIDAY! FILM

Daily Mail (London), July 3, 1998 | Go to article overview

Harrison Is Stranded in Battle of the Sexes; IT'S FRIDAY! FILM


Byline: CHRISTOPHER TOOKEY

Six Days, Seven Nights (12) **

Verdict: Escapist tosh that you'd be better off escaping.

Grease (PG) ***

Verdict: Return of the daft but likeable musical.

MANY women have doubtless fantasised about being marooned on a tropical island with Harrison Ford, and that can be the only reason why Six Days, Seven Nights - in which the heroine is placed in just such an enviable situation - has done well at the American box office.

Ford plays a man's man, a grizzled charter pilot whose plane is brought down in an unexpected storm, with his only passenger a nervy magazine editor from New York (Anne Heche).

Needless to say, they can't stand each other. She's unimpressed by his plane, long before it crashes. 'I can't go in this!

It's broken!' she says. 'It's not broken,' says Ford, placidly. 'It's being maintained.' She's critical of his lifestyle - a perpetual holiday spent sunning himself, drinking to excess and romancing the local floosies.

'I'm living the life every man dreams of,' he boasts. 'Yeah,' she replies witheringly. 'Until he's 12.' Other factors conspire to keep her from entangling herself immediately in Mr Ford's chest hair. She's engaged to an affluent yuppie (David Schwimmer from Friends, overacting badly) who is so cloyingly attentive - 'Would you like some honey, sweetie?' - that you'd guess he was doomed to lose out, even if you didn't know that Harrison Ford is the star.

Ford, who's in his mid-50s and looks it, doesn't pretend to be younger than he is, but seems far too old for Heche (who's 29). 'You deserve someone fresher,' he tells her towards the end and he's right.

Ford often seems ill at ease when he can't locate the reality beneath a role, and is heavy-handed with the few comic lines he gets.

Anne Heche was cast in the movie before she 'came out' as the lesbian lover of sitcom star Ellen Degeneres.

But she can do heterosexual romance - she even managed to look interested in Tommy Lee Jones in Volcano - and the photography makes the most of her physical attractions.

Her problem is that the character is whiny and irritating - mostly useless in a crisis, and constantly acting the little girl ('Oooh! Some sort of creature has just swum up my pants!'). It is hard to see what attracts Ford to her, beyond lust.

Developments in sexual politics over the past three decades seem to have passed by first-time sceenwriter Michael Browning. …

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