In spite of good performances, Alan J. Pakula’s Me Decade comedy Starting Over, with its ”Let’s talk about feelings” sensibility, isn’t all that funny. Burt Reynolds brings his casual charm to Phil Potter, a magazine writer hung up on his ex (a loopy, seductive Candice Bergen as a pop singer with a bad voice) who jumps into the dating pool and begins a bumpy courtship with a nursery school teacher (a luminous, vulnerable Jill Clayburgh). Side by side with deftly rendered dramatic moments, such as an eavesdropped conversation with the ex and the initiation of sex, lie clumsy slapstick bits that fail to leaven the angst: e.g., Phil steps clothed into a shower (a steal from Charade). On the other hand, the songs by Marvin Hamlisch and Carole Bayer Sager, which Bergen delivers wretchedly, are golden. EXTRAS None.

Starting Over
  • Movie
  • 105 minutes