I Love Trouble (1994)

No amount of nostalgia can bring back the past, but, oh, how TROUBLE
tries.  Spousal scribes Charles and Nancy Shyer-- who remade FATHER OF
THE BRIDE in 1991-- have returned to reinvent the screwball comedy.

Nick Nolte and Julia Roberts play rival Chicago reporters. He's a
veteran columnist, she's a cub reporter.  They meet at the scene of a
train derailment-- a fitting metaphor for their first impressions. (He
hates her guts, she thinks he's a sleaze.) They sniff around the
wreckage, scoop each other's story, and, finally, pool their resources
to work as a team.  That is, a team that happens to file separately.

Rival reporting is a tried-and-true Hollywood tradition and, in the
beginning, the film has the feel of one of those great, old newspaper
classics like THE FRONT PAGE.  Somewhere around the hour mark, though,
TROUBLE transforms into a thriller, complete with bodies, bullets, and
half-baked McGuffins.  Which is too bad, because the plot-- some
nonsense about missing microfiche-- shoots the film in the foot.

Nolte and Roberts have more chemistry than the film deserves, but not
enough to keep viewers awake through the sitcom situations that the
characters wind up in. The script's lack of snappy patter doesn't help
much, either.

(The age discrepancy is almost worth noting, until you remember that
 Nolte and Roberts are the same age as Tracy and Hepburn were in their

Technical credits are surprisingly superb. Charles Shyer's direction,
Dean Tavoularis' production design, and John Lindley's lensing are all
worth watching.  If nothing else, I LOVE TROUBLE is one of the better
*looking* films of the summer.

Grade: C-

Copyright 1994 by Michael J. Legeros

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