There are several laugh-out-loud moments in the adult romantic comedy Cake, a film with the magical ability to — poof!— leave your head the second it leaves the screen.
At least it’s not fattening.
Heather Graham stars in Cake as Pippa, a rootless travel writer who intends to gather no moss.
Phobic about relationships, she prefers the love-’em-and-leave-’em approach to men.
While she is home for a friend’s wedding, her father (Bruce Gray) is hospitalized.
Here, thinks Pippa, is a chance to mend her troubled relationship with her dad.
She’ll help out while he’s ill.
She’ll take over the running of one of his magazines and thus endear herself to pater. But the magazine, oh irony of ironies, is Wedding Bells, one devoted to all the things that are anathema to Pippa: Huge poufy white dresses, ugly bridesmaid gowns, gift registries, complicated finger food and legally binding contracts undertaken with an uninterested third party.
Pippa has to cope with a snarky ad saleswoman (Cheryl Hines, brilliant here), hysterical models and the ultra-critical Ian Gray (David Sutcliffe) the suit who advises her dad and disapproves of Pippa.
He is, obviously, the love interest, but only after Pippa is finished with a photographer played by Taye Diggs.
On the event front, Cake goes into high sitcom overdrive, initially going for laughs and then switching to drama — Pippa and dad, Pippa and the magazine award, Pippa’s pregnant friend, how Pippa’s mom died, and so on.
It’s better when it’s funny.
The real heartbreaker occurs when Pippa and Mr. Totally Wrong finally get together.
You can sense that she’s going to embrace the absolute worst bits of domesticity, a terrible letdown after the fun of watching her enthusiastic drinking, smoking and whoring.
Strangely, this tale of an inexorable slide into bourgeois commitment was written by a woman.
Geez. Maybe she didn’t really mean it.
This is just as light and sweet as the title suggests, but why do feisty heroines always have to turn out to be damaged women who secretly long to register at Pottery Barn? Just wondering.
(This film is rated PG)
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