Length: 97 minutes
Director: Jonathan Kasdan
Writer: Jonathan Kasdan (“Dawson’s Creek”; “Freaks and Geeks”)
Starring: Meg Ryan, Adam Brody, Kristen Stewart, Ginnifer Goodwin, JoBeth Williams, Olympia Dukakis, Dustin Milligan, Makenzie Vega, Elena Anaya, Clark Gregg
Every moment of “In the Land of Women” feels false. It comes as no surprise that writer/director Jonathan Kasdan- son of director Lawrence (The Big Chill) and brother of director Jake (Walk Hard)- cut his teeth writing episodes of “Dawson’s Creek” (though one episode of “Freaks and Geeks” which he has to get props for). The movie feels like young Jon watched “Garden State” a few dozen times and decided he wanted to make his own version with a shot of that trademark “Dawson” banter. Soft core porn writer Carter Webb (“The O.C.”’s Adam Brody- fitting) had just been dumped by his movie star girlfriend (Elena Anaya). He escapes to the comfort of his ailing Grandmother (Oscar winner Olympia Dukakis) who lives in a small suburban Detroit town. He hopes to forget about his ex and work on a long in the works project on his high school years. Instead, he meets the neighbors and gets involved in a love triangle with the mother, Sarah (Meg Ryan) and teenage daughter Lucy (Kristen Stewart). Sarah has discovered she has breast cancer and that her husband (Clark Gregg) is having an affair. Lucy is going through typical awkward high school issues including another love triangle involving the captain of the football squad (Graham Wardle) and his aloof best friend (Dustin Milligan). There’s a lot of dialogue and everyone seems to believe they are saying the most important things in the world- especially the younger daughter of the family, Paige (Makenzie Vega) who spouts out “Dawson’s”-esque dialogue until you want to smother her with a pillow. Talk about not believing in what you’re watching. Kasdan has an astonishingly annoying habit of having his characters hesitate and sigh before they say something particularly “heavy”. It might have worked for the WB, but for a feature length movie it grates on one’s nerves.