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‘I Love Trouble’

By Rita Kempley
Washington Post Staff Writer
June 29, 1994

 


Director:
Charles Shyer;
Nancy Myers
Cast:
Julia Roberts;
Nick Nolte
PG
vulgar language and violence


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"I Love Trouble," a facile caper about rival newspaper reporters, is a lot like an Ikea bookcase: It's easily assembled and stylishly utilitarian. Written, directed and produced by "Father of the Bride's" Charles Shyer and Nancy Meyers, this romantic thriller rarely ventures beyond the genre's requirements. Basically you've got patter, peril and, finally, passion.

Julia Roberts and Nick Nolte costar as a couple of competitors who eventually and improbably join forces in pursuit of a big story. Roberts is a tenacious cub reporter who scoops Nolte, playing a legendary columnist-turned-novelist whose journalistic instincts have long since atrophied.

When the two meet at a train derailment, he tries to pick her up and then offers her guidance. It's clear they were meant for each other. The rivalry and the relationship intensify as the pair continue to bump heads in their efforts to out-scoop each other. Much scrappy repartee ensues in the manner of a '40s-style romantic comedy until the two find that they have become targets of a Yale-educated cabal of milk-poisoning bio-terrorists.

When nearly murdered in the pursuit of the truth, the stars agree to a shaky truce and pursue the story together. Hereafter, the stakes rise, the plot snarls, the quips subside and the rivals fall into each other's arms. The filmmakers have been inspired by the relationship between Tracy and Hepburn, but the pairing instead calls up visions of David Brinkley nibbling Tabitha Soren's little pink ear. Nolte looks as if he's making out with his niece. That's not to say that "I Love Trouble" is remotely kinky. It's as bland as its title, which really should be attached to a Disney cat movie.

"I Love Trouble" is rated PG for vulgar language and violence.

   
© Copyright 1999 The Washington Post Company

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