The Parent Trap ★★★★

Here's the thing: this movie is ABSURD. Let's start at the beginning.

-Dennis Quaid and Natasha Richardson (Nick and Elizabeth) meet on a cruise ship and get married after only a few days because common sense.
-It seems that Elizabeth moves from her hometown of London, England, to Napa, California to be with Nick. Sure, whatever, Napa is cool. Wine and stuff.
-They are married for an unspecified length of time and then have twin girls named Hallie and Annie (or Susan and Sharon, in the original Hayley Mills version, which is also absurd, but has musical numbers).
-When the girls are babies, Nick and Elizabeth decide to divorce. Fine. We all saw that one coming.
-Instead of being rational adults and considering the needs and futures of their daughters, they each take a child to raise. Nick takes Hallie and Elizabeth takes Annie. Elizabeth moves back to London. They agree to never see each other for the rest of their lives and to each conceal the existence of the other twin.
-*deep breath*
-Okay.
-First of all, this plan is certifiably insane and someone should have called CPS. LIKE WHAT THE ACTUAL HELL. I don't think I even need to detail all of the things wrong with this plan, because it's so obviously messed up. I'm also perpetually concerned with the fact that everyone in their lives (grandparent, butler, Chessy, etc.) just goes along with it like it was a normal idea. Yes, let this girl live her entire life without knowing her mother/father/sister. It's no big deal. Ignoring your problems solves everything. Ugh.
-Years later the girls are each sent to the same summer camp, located somewhere on the East coast.
-Why they are both sent to this particular camp that is nowhere near either of their homes has confused me for years. It can't be that great.
-It is there that the girls (and the rest of the camp) discover each other.
-Everyone thinks, "Hmm. How odd. On with our day," and continue fencing.
-WHAT.
-These girls are very obviously identical twins and no one seems to find it strange that they've never met.
-The integrity of the camp is further questioned when, after some mutual pranking, the 11 year old girls are disciplined by being made to live alone in the same cabin far away from the rest of the camp without adult supervision. #logic
-SOMEONE. CALL. CPS.
-It is in this isolated cabin that the girls do what no adults in this movie seem to be able to do, which is step back, think, and come to a rational conclusion.
-They're sisters. Amazing.
-It should be noted here that Annie is a pre-teen girl who doesn't know who Leonardo DiCaprio is, which is maybe my biggest problem with the film.
-But I digress.
-The girls decide that their parents are still in love with each other because neither one has re-married after all these years and they obviously belong together. Time for another brilliant plan.
-You know what happens. They switch lives. Annie gets her hair cut and her ears pierced because clearly Hallie is an award-winning beautician like Dolly Parton in Steel Magnolias. Annie teaches Hallie how to do an English accent because clearly Annie has been trained at Vassar and Yale and she's Meryl Streep incarnate.
-Hallie goes to London. Annie goes to Napa.
-Elizabeth makes a bridal model wear a top hat under a veil and it looks like garbage.
-Annie refuses to eat chili because she's Posh Spice and she couldn't possibly.
-Hallie becomes a sommelier.
-Both parents are extremely wealthy and have gorgeous homes, as all Nancy Meyers characters do.
-It takes the parents weeks to figure out that their child isn't their child. I mean, it IS their child, but it's not THEIR child... You get it.
-Stellar observation skills, Nick and Elizabeth.
-For the love of God, CPS, please intervene.
-Eventually they all meet up. Shenanigans ensue, someone gets drunk, someone falls in a pool (Dennis Quaid falls in a pool. It's beautiful), blah blah blah.
-The girls refuse to go home until their parents can figure out which girl is which. This is actually not the worst idea, because it proves what awful parents they really are. Then they go camping.
-I haven't even talked about Meredith Blake yet.
-She's basically Cersei Lannister.
-She gets dumped when she demands that Nick choose between herself and his daughters. Nick's not that dumb, guys. He knows when to put his daughter's needs before his own.
- .......................................
-Anyway.
-Nick and Elizabeth decide they love each other after all because they've spent a few days together without ripping each other's heads off and that is the stuff that good marriages are made of. Nick and Hallie fly the Concord to London to surprise Elizabeth and Annie and they all live happily ever after, except probably not because absolutely none of the deeper issues were ever addressed, so everyone get ready for counseling.

I love this movie.

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