Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Speechless (1994) [PG-13] ***

Julia Mann (Geena Davis) and Kevin Vallick (Michael Keaton) are insomniacs who are staying at the same hotel in Las Cruces, New Mexico. They meet while fighting over the last bottle of Nytol sleeping pills in the hotel gift shop, and their first date is an all-night drive south to the Mexican border for breakfast burritos. Kevin says he's a Hollywood sitcom writer, and Julia says she's a reporter, but they really are speechwriters for rival candidates in the race for a U.S. Senate seat.

While Kevin and Julia clearly are attracted to one another, they don't discover the truth about each other until they both appear as guests at a local school's Career Day. Both feel deceived by the other, and the not-so-subtle barbs they toss at one another threaten to end their blossoming romance. However, their attraction is so strong that they can't stay away from each other, and since campaign rules forbid their socializing, they have to keep their relationship secret. To make matters worse, Julia's ex-fiance, celebrity reporter Baghdad Bob Freed (Christopher Reeve) arrives with an engagement ring for Julia, and Kevin's boss Annette (Bonnie Bedelia), who is also his ex-wife, is growing jealous of Kevin's reporter friend.

Michael Keaton and Geena Davis have great timing together, both for physical comedy and for comedic dialog, and they also have great romantic chemistry. The soundtrack is outstanding and there's a happy ending. If you like light romantic comedy, with more comedy than romance - films like Forget Paris, Only You, and He Said, She Said - then you will really enjoy Speechless.

Labels: comedy, politics, romance
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