Then She Found Me (3 stars)

Then She Found Me

(15) 100min

Adopted, broody April (Helen Hunt) is rocked when her husband leaves her and her adopted mother dies, but everything changes again when her birth mother (Bette Midler) jostles her way into her life.

The theme of actress Hunt’s directorial debut is that of being lost and found – April is lost in her own life, but is unsure whether she wants to be found by her brash, showbiz birth mother. She’s also not ready to be found by Frank (Colin Firth), a parent at the school where she teaches with whom she starts an affair and loves being part of his family. Firth is the typical stuffy Brit father with issues, but Midler steals the show, as the over-the-top, guilt ridden, desperate-to-please mother. Hunt as director has a good eye for detail and mood, but the film plods along; April’s mental anguish becomes languid and uninteresting, her realisations about what will make her happy are distant and non-inclusive – identification, belonging and fulfilment as distant to her character as they are to the audience.

Then She Found Me

  • 3 stars
  • 2007
  • US
  • 1h 40min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Helen Hunt
  • Written by: Alice Arlen, Victor Levin, Helen Hunt, Based on the novel by Elinor Lipman
  • Cast: Helen Hunt, Bette Midler, Colin Firth, Matthew Broderick

In Hunt's directorial debut April (Hunt herself) loses a husband and adopted mother but gains an over-bearing birth mother (Midler) and a British love interest (Firth). Seeking drama in the endings and beginnings of relationships, no one involved achieves fulfilment, including the audience.

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