Although Director Ivan Reitman occasionally misses, as he did with
FATHER'S DAY, he generally hits the mark dead-on, as he did with
GHOSTBUSTERS and DAVE. His latest motion picture, SIX DAYS, SEVEN
NIGHTS, is a big-hearted movie filled with comedy and romance. Best
described as a SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON-style love story, the movie stars
Harrison Ford and Anne Heche as two people who go from hatred to love
as they struggle with dire circumstances. With a marvelous script by
Michael Browning, the story provides ample laughs as well as a few
beautifully tender moments.
It all starts when Robin Monroe (Heche), the assistant editor of
"Dazzle," is given a ticket to a remote tropical island by her would-be
husband, Frank Martin (David Schwimmer). He is going to take her away
from her killer work schedule in a frozen Manhattan so that he can pop
the question on a warm beach under a swaying palm tree. "I want this
to be the most unforgettable vacation of our lives," he tells her in
the movie's most prophetic line.
They ride the last leg of their flight in a jury-rigged plane
flown by a graying pilot named Quinn Harris (Ford). Quinn's busty
companion, Angelica (Jacqueline Obradors), looking like one of those
girls that your mother warned you about, comes along for the ride.
After they arrive, Robin's office demands that she fly to Tahiti
for a day to supervise a photo shoot, so she hires a reluctant Quinn to
transport her. The plane crashes on an uninhabited island, and most of
the remaining movie is about how Robin and Quinn cope. Facing
everything from scorpions to pirates, they survive, but just barely.
"Why aren't you one of those guys with skills?" she taunts him.
"You send them into the wilderness with a Q-tip and a knife, and they
build you a shopping mall." Finally after one calamity after another,
she allows as how, "I've had just about as much vacation as I can
The movie is as good with the physical comedy as the verbal. In
one delicious scene, Robin freezes in the water when a snake crawls
into her shorts. The look on both of their eyes as Quinn reaches deep
into her crotch area to retrieve the snake is a sweet mixture of shock,
fright and ecstasy.
Starting out despising and ridiculing each other, they end up
romantically inclined even if not exactly lovers. In the show's most
precious and romantic scene, Quinn talks about how much he enjoyed
their brief kissing earlier and muses on how much he'd like to do it
again. In an age in which actors quickly throw off their clothes and
jump into bed, the intimacy of simple kissing is rarely bothered with
and certainly never discussed.
There is excellent, albeit subtle, chemistry between Robin and
Quinn. She's the smart professional with the sexy outfits. And he's
her opposite, a boozing pilot who is past his prime. Nevertheless,
they find that circumstances make each attracted to the other.
(As for Heche's sexual orientation, let it be said that the motion
picture industry is filled with heterosexuals playing homosexuals and
vice versa. Acting like something they're not is what actors are paid
to do in every film they are in.)
The movie cuts between Robin and Quinn's hardships and the luxury
that Frank and Angelica are enjoying back at the resort. Angelica is a
generous sort - "It's like after a funeral, everybody has sex," she
says - so she invites Frank to share his grief with her.
With Michael Chapman's breathtaking cinematography - the picture
was filmed on Kauai - and Randy Edelman's dreamy music, the movie is
easy to fall for.
The film's most delightfully ridiculous aspect has to be Robin's
coiffure. No matter how long they remain stranded on the desert
island, she never has a bad hair day. She even awakens with fresh
lipstick. Life in the wilderness with a sexy woman has never been
SIX NIGHTS, SEVEN NIGHTS runs 1:41. It is rated PG-13 for adult
themes, mild profanity and cartoonish violence and would be fine for
kids around eleven and up.
Copyright © 1998 Steve Rhodes