Let's face it, the title "In The Land Of Women" sounds like a pornographic male fantasy. While the central character of the story does happen to write soft-core porn and become involved with several gorgeous women, the film isn't a porno, but rather an unoriginal talky chick flick.
The story: After being dumped by his girlfriend (who is apparently a popular celebrity), Carter decides to pack up his things and visit his sick grandmother in Michigan. Upon arrival, he separately meets a mother and daughter who live across the street from his grandmother. He ends up becoming close friends with both of them as he finds that he is not only helping them deal with problems of heartbreak and change, but that they are helping him cope with his issues/identity crisis.
"In The Land Of Women" can best be described as a poor man's "Garden State." It's another run-of-the-mill figuring out life/coming of age Lifetime esque film that's peppered with sappy music montages and Emo scenes. On top of that, the story (written by Jon Kasdan) tries to be "real," but comes off as a complete Hollywood fantasy. Where else can a guy miraculously hit it off with two stunning beauties who happen to be neighbors? If the story was less far fetched, more grounded in reality, and didn't bail on taking the characters somewhere interesting, the film could have worked. Instead, we get a half-assed movie that never takes full advantage of the ideas and themes that are presented.
As for the cast, they do the best they can with the material. Adam Brody, a charming and charismatic up and comer, looks utterly bored in every seen he's in. I can't say I blame him as I was utterly bored watching every scene of the 98 minute snooze fest. Meg Ryan, who only seemed to shine when she starred opposite Tom Hanks, finally pulls out a solid performance here. Perhaps she can still resurrect her career afterall. Surprisingly, Olympia Dukakis (best known for her role in "Moonstruck") gives the best performance as Carter's crazy/sick grandmother. Her character may be paper thin, but her line deliveries were one of the few notable aspects of the movie.
The disc is double-sided and contains both fullscreen and widescreen versions of the movie. I watched the widescreen version and I have to say I wasn't entirely thrilled by the transfer. I noticed a lot of grain and fuzz. It seems like no effort went into making this disc. It reeks of being slapped together rather quickly. English, French, and Spanish subtitles are available on this disc as well.
The English 5.1 audio track does its job. The audio is never hard to hear and the "hip" soundtrack always comes through loud and clear. A Spanish 5.1 track is also included.
The only extras on this disk are trailers for: "License To Wed," "Gracie," "The Ellen Show," "No Reservations," and "August Rush." Yikes!
"In The Land Of Women" should be re-titled "In The Land Of Familiar Territory." This melodramatic film contains nothing we haven't already seen before. Don't bother seeing this one.
Film and television enthusiast Nick Lyons recently had his first book published titled "Attack of the Sci-Fi Trivia." It is available on Amazon.com.