A COMEDY ABOUT FEAR OF COMMITMENT, HATING YOUR JOB, FALLING IN LOVE AND OTHER POP FAVORITES.
Rob Gordon (John Cusack), owner of a small record store in Chicago, is dumped by his girlfriend (Iben Hjejle) and tries unsuccessfully to get over her. The setting in Nick Hornby’s amusing, somewhat angst-ridden British novel has been changed into an American city, but the filmmakers handle it well. Director Stephen Frears still makes this a funny and occasionally insightful (although not all that romantic) tale about music and men who remain children at heart. The actors are carefully chosen and two of them are standouts; Cusack who spends too much time making top-five lists (I can sympathize), and Jack Black who can’t stop lecturing customers at the record store.
2000-U.S. 113 min. Color. Produced by Tim Bevan, Rudd Simmons. Directed by Stephen Frears. Screenplay: D.V. DeVincentis, Steve Pink, John Cusack, Scott Rosenberg. Novel: Nick Hornby. Cast: John Cusack (Rob Gordon), Iben Hjejle (Laura), Todd Louiso (Dick), Jack Black, Lisa Bonet, Catherine Zeta-Jones… Joan Cusack, Lili Taylor, Tim Robbins, Bruce Springsteen.
Trivia: The filmmakers allegedly wanted Bob Dylan for a cameo, but went with Bruce Springsteen in the end.
Quote: “Liking both Marvin Gaye and Art Garfunkel is like supporting both the Israelis and the Palestinians.” (Cusack)
Last word: “John would argue the whole time about this and that, but not to the point of, I mean not in that, not in quite the way you imagine. He argued, I mean, it was all that business of music where all the arguments came out. No, and I mean, he basically wanted to give a good performance, at which point, you know, you’re all on the same side. But he’s a, he’s also a bright guy so of course the things he said, well, sometimes they were interesting, and sometimes I guess not so interesting, like anybody would be. But he didn’t corruptly, you know, use his power [as co-producer] or anything like that. I’ve never met an actor who did that, to be quite honest. They, it’s one of the rather difficult things is that as well as being very powerful, they’re probably extremely good actors.” (Frears, BFI Screenonline)