Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, November 6, 2014


DR. T AND THE WOMEN (2000). Director: Robert Altman.

Dr. Travis (Richard Gere with a white-haired dye job) is a Dallas gynecologist with an exclusive clientele. His wife Kate (Farrah Fawcett) has a public meltdown -- she takes off all of her clothing and steps into a fountain -- and winds up institutionalized, after which he embarks on an affair with new golf club employee, Bree (Helen Hunt of Empire Falls). Meanwhile his family and patients are bothering him with an assortment of problems: nurse Carolyn (Shelley Long) is secretly in love with Dr. T, and his daughter, Dee Dee (Kate Hudson of The Skeleton Key), has invited her former female lover (Liv Tyler) to her wedding (to a man) as maid of honor; Dee Dee's sister thinks the marriage is a mistake,  for obvious reasons. [Bree has a supposedly open-minded but pretty stupid reaction to this whole rather contrived business.] Other cast members include Lee Grant as a shrink; Andy Richter, who makes no impression, as a buddy; Janine Turner as a neurotic patient; and Laura Dern. In its treatment of the lesbian couple the movie strikes some liberated, if awkward, sparks, but somehow it still seems old-fashioned and unsatisfying, although it's more watchable than a lot of Altman's[Popeye] movies. One interesting sequence graphically shows the miracle of child birth.

Verdict: Typically rambling and unfocused Altman with some good scenes and okay acting. **1/2.


angelman66 said...

Hi William - I agree 100% with your assessment of this one. I want this to be a great Altman film, but it just isn't, despite the terrific cast and premise.

My all-time favorite Altman movies are The Player, A Wedding, and the little-known gem Com Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean. I love lots of his others, but Dr. T is not one of them...

FYI, I just added Great Old Movies to my Favorite Blogs blogroll...I find myself coming back so often to see what you've been watching. Cheers!

William said...

Thanks very much, Chris! I have eclectic tastes -- some would say weird.

Altman, I confess, has never been one of my favorites but of his films I enjoyed "Popeye" and "That Cold Day in the Park." He also did some interesting TV work early in his career.

Again, thanks for reading and for your comments! Bill

angelman66 said...

I forgot he directed Popeye. Will check that out again...have not seen it since it came out in 1980!
Will add to my list!

angelman66 said...

Your taste in film is NOT weird, by the's very well-rounded! That's why I love this Forrest Gump's box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get!

William said...

That's what I try to do, have an interesting variety of movies. Thanks so much!

"Popeye" isn't perfect by any means, but it has good performances [especially from the tragic Robin Williams] and many charming moments.