This 2003 Oscar-nominated movie begins when successful entrepreneur Harry (Jack Nicholson), is asked to accompany the young and lovely Marin (Amanda Peet) to her mother’s unoccupied beach house in the Hamptons.
Harry is a womanizer who prefers women decades his junior, blah blah this is the kitchen of the Hamptons’ beach house:
As young Marin changes into her swimsuit and Harry places the wine in the fridge to chill, suddenly there is activity at the back door. It’s Erica (Diane Keaton), returning home with her sister Zoe (Frances McDormand).
Letting the awkward situation get the best of them, everyone threatens to leave. But soon they decide they are all adults who can get along for one night—and so they spend tons of money in a gourmet food market and return home to prepare spaghetti with clam sauce.
But the dinner conversation is not smooth—Harry is challenged with the theory that men can remain bachelors into old age and are rewarded with young dates, while single aging women become the objects of pity. Harry and the young Marin retire to their bedroom, leaving Erica and her sister to wash the dishes.
But suddenly Erica and her sister hear a scream—it’s young Marin calling for help because Harry has just keeled over with a heart attack! Once in the emergency room, he falls under the care of a doctor named Julian (Keanu Reeves), who flirts with the much-older Erica, blah blah Harry isn’t well enough to travel home blah so he is placed under reluctant Erica’s care and returned to the beach house.
Within hours everyone else leaves to return to the city, and Erica is frustrated because she’s in the process of writing a play, and the last thing she needs is Harry and his distractions. “It’s OK, I can do this,” says Erica. “I’ll get myself into a Zen place. Play music, cook, write, focus.”
But as Erica tries to work, she is interrupted by Harry’s ceaselessly ringing telephone and rap music and the waft of his cigars:
The next day the cute young doctor makes a house call—and after examining Harry, he corners Erica in the kitchen and tells her he has a crush:
Meanwhile Erica and Harry are getting to know each other a bit better, and as Erica prepares for her date with the young doctor, an interesting thing happens: Harry begins to see Erica with fresh eyes. And not just due to her form-fitting dress:
After Erica’s date, she and Harry lie in opposing bedrooms sending each other flirty Instant Messages, until the two resolve to meet in the late-night kitchen for a snack:
But just as Erica prepares the pancake batter without properly measuring her ingredients even though Bossy has never heard of this in her entire life, Erica’s daughter, young Marin, returns from the city to check on Harry.
But instantly young Marin catches the vibe that she has interrupted more than poorly measured pancakes, and she is happy for her mother. And so the next morning Marin breaks up with Harry while Erica watches from her kitchen window.
With Marin out of the picture, Erica and Harry enjoy a picnic on the beach that is interrupted by rain. The two race home, dodging lightening, and close the door against the threatening storm.
They lose electricity and waste no time falling into each other’s arms, and falling into each other’s other.
But the afterglow doesn’t last long, because the next day Harry is cleared to return to his home in New York City. He packs up and says goodbye as Erica waves him down her long driveway.
But before you know it, Erica is racing into the city too because blah blah and she has dinner with blah and in that very restaurant she sees Harry—and he is once again dining with a very young and beautiful woman.
Erica and Harry have it out and Harry admits he doesn’t know how to be a boyfriend—and so Erica returns home to the Hamptons, where she thrashes around, mourning the death of their relationship:
Erica cries here, she cries there—until one day her sister Zoe bumps into the young doctor at a farmer’s market, and she brings him home to dine with Erica. This distraction helps, because in no time, Erica is ditching her Kleenex and finishing her play, which she has turned into a comedy about Harry:
And just who do you think is there, stretched out on the comfortable sofa, to celebrate the completion of Erica’s play?
Will Erica stay with the doctor? Will she reunite with Harry? Will Bossy ever get her light-filled kitchen with flat-black door pulls?