Six Days Seven Nights
Director: Ivan Reitman

Director: Mike Nichols

Reviewed by Paghat the Ratgirl

Six Days Seven Nights

In Six Days Seven Nights (1998), Harrison Ford plays a grampa who falls in love with his granddaughter (Anne Heche). He kidnaps the kid to an isolated tropical island, sticks a snake in her pants, & scares her into having sex with him. And so they live happily ever after.

That's not quite how it goes, but you'd have to think that plot outline sounds pretty decent to enjoy this turkey. You'd think in this day & age a script would somewhere along the line at least acknowledge it's a story about a geezer and a youngster who fall in love, but noooo.

I mean, I could believe that if a young woman's only choices were either an age-appropriate David Schwimmer, or some dude older than Dad who happens to be Harrison Ford, an ice-down-the-spine cretin like Schwimmer wouldn't win. But when a story pretends May/December isn't even an issue, it's just lame.

To give this a sufficiently adament thumbs-down, I'd have to find a circus freak with extra thumbs instead of fingers.

Regarding Henry

Harrison has appeared in more than a few dogs, with attempts at romantic comedy in the likes of Six Days Seven Nights or the abysmal remake of Sabrina () are especially painful.

He also sort of falls on his face attempting to play the weak, vulnerable, tragic figure of Regarding Henry (1991), which is one part Cliff Robertson as Charly (1968) based on the short story "Flowers of Algernon," & one part Tim (1979) which perversely asks the viewer to embrace Mel Gibson as a studly mental deficient. Harrison Ford as vulnerable & bewildered naif? Gimme a break.

We first encounter Henry as a big success in the world. High-powered job wherein he can abuse whoever he wants without repurcussion, a perfect family which doesn't get in the weay of extra poontang on the side, Mr. Handsome as ruthless son of a bitch who does harm to the world as a trial lawyer with a heart of coal. Then John Leguizamo shoots him in the head during a corner-store robbery & Henry's brain damage induces the innocence of a child.

Harrison Ford makes the character as credible as the lame script permits, though he's definitely more convincing as the evil attorney than as the nice man who can no longer tell a circle from a square. There might've been a medical-condition "movie of the week" in here somewhere, but awfully thin for a feature film.

Regarding Henry

The easily imagined crisis of Henry's wife (Annette Bening) possibly falling back in love with the "new" Henry, & a new relationship with his formerly negelcted daughter (Mikki Allen) suddenly smarter than he is, should probably have been much more strongly the focus the tale.

Instead it all feels like we're supposed to be most concerned with whether or not he can reclaim any part of his life as an attorney when deprived of his ability to be a bastard.

The script is tepid & no one except Henry has even that tepid hint of complexity. Even he's kind of a cypher of Nasty that becomes No Longer Nasty, but the rest of the cast is hardly even there. Nothing occurs in the story that is the least bit unexpected, though it at least avoids too pat a conclusion; we're not instructed to be certain it'll all work out for the better, & that's a surprise since the tone of thing just about begged a miraculous recovery of all former successes sans assholiness.

The entire film is emotionally gutless as well as cliche. There's some slight emotional connection for his rehabilitation after severe injury, & he pulls off drooling confusion really well. But there's no honest connection with the impact on his family, with too much focus on the impact on his career. It's like the script was written by someone who loves his job but couldn't care less about his family, so couldn't imagine a severe brain injury being a bummer for any other reason than mucking up one's career curve.

The acting isn't bad considering that Ford is miscast & Benning given far too little to do. But slick performances can't save this script, which never stops seeming like it should've been made for the Oxygen Channel with soap stars in it.

copyright by Paghat the Ratgirl

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