December 03, 1993 at 05:00 AM EST

MY LIFE (PG-13) The latest and most grotesquely manipulative of the recent middle-aged-men’s weepies. When he’s diagnosed with cancer, self-absorbed yuppie Bob Jones (Michael Keaton) learns to forgive his parents for not taking him to the circus when he was a kid and to appreciate his wife (Nicole Kidman) for the gorgeous, inhuman Barbie doll she is. There’s nothing wrong with a movie that exalts the well-examined life, but My Life is structured so that every scene is a pious growth lesson, none of which arises out of honestly observed character or incident. Scripted and directed by Ghost writer Bruce Joel Rubin, it’s a movie to make the tenderhearted collapse in a happy pile of Kleenex while the cynical dig their fingernails into their armrests in appalled resistance. ( 198, Nov. 26) D+ -TB

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