Barbra Streisand's self-absorbed remake of a 1958 French film stars Jeff Bridges as a college professor tired of sexual politics. He makes a deal with a dowdy colleague (Streisand) that they provide companionship for one a... more »nother, with no thought of getting into bed. She agrees but soon becomes frustrated, the agreement only reinforcing her unfulfilled desire to have a complete relationship with a man. Mimi Rogers is on hand as Babs's striking sister, and Lauren Bacall received an Oscar nomination for her role as the heroine's selfish mother. The film is OK, but it becomes an irritating vanity piece for Streisand (who directed as well as stars). Her character constantly gazes upon her own reflection and is told at least a dozen times, one way or another, just how attractive she is. One wants to shout out, we get it already--you're pretty! The DVD release presents the film in both widescreen and pan and scan versions, plus a Dolby soundtrack. --Tom Keogh« less
A charming story of personal growth and self-acceptance.
Victoria Tarrani | Betwixt FL and CA, USA | 07/23/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Barbra Streisand is not dowdy, yet her perfection in assuming the role as a lonely, middle-aged woman (Rose) is flawless. Rose is an excellent and popular college teacher. She knows how to teach, the way to involve and enchant a rowdy class, and she would rather watch baseball than go on another "dead end" date.
Jeff Bridges (Greg) is the handsome, yet exceedingly boring teacher. Most of the students in his math classes sleep, pass notes, chat. He is a lonely man, but all of his interpersonal relationships end as the woman moves on. He believes it is because he chooses stunning woman and then becomes intimate. He decides to find a perfect mate, and the main criterion is that she be ugly. His campaign begins with an advertisement. Claire is Rose?s sister, and she responds to the ad as if she were Rose.
Rose lives with her mother Hanna Morgan, played by Lauren Bacall, who did receive an Oscar nomination for the role of a selfish, self-absorbed, snob. Hanna has kept Rose under her thumb and in her house, and always plays the "What will I do if...?" or "Would you really leave me?" card. Her performance is extraordinary because she undermined Rose to keep her taking care of mommy dearest, but it is subtle.
Streisand directed this film, and though it may appear to be a showcase for her many talents, there is a strong message. Do not settle. Never accept the belief that you are ugly, even though your Mom and others tell you, as they did her all of her life. You can always become the person you want to be.
Rose and Greg date and eventually marry, but the terms are no amorous encounters. For example on their wedding night, they watch TV and they sleep in twin beds. In growing closer and falling in love, Rose teaches Greg "how to teach" and they are constant companions. Rose believes she can settle for this lack of affection, but she is in love with her husband and is a very sensuous woman.
Even though I prefer action films, I loved this movie. It is one of the better "chick flicks." There is a powerful and tender scene between Rose and Hannah regarding a very old photo. The universality of the film ? you are valuable, just as you are, do not settle -- makes this a classic favorite.
Victoria Tarrani "
"I tried that once, he thought I had something in my eye."
Robert Johnson | Richmond, KY USA | 04/09/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Streisand's third directorial effort was greeted with surprisingly vicious reaction from both fans and critics, nearly all of whom immediately labeled it as an over-the-top vanity piece. It also had considerable difficulty at the box office. After opening with strong numbers, the $45 million budgeted film took a nose dive and did not recover. It ended up taking in $46 million domestically ($65 million worldwide), which was a respectable take, but far from the blockbuster status of films like A STAR IS BORN or THE PRINCE OF TIDES. When considering all of the above information, it's a bit surprising to discover that the film is nothing more than an entertaining and heart-felt romantic comedy. In hindsight, it's hard to understand why a such a harmless and light-weight film became such a lighting rod for scathing reviews and harsh comments.While the storyline is predictable, the movie is actually very well-done with a brisk pace, compelling characters, and a witty screenplay. The finale may come down a bit heavy-handed on the "message" end, but the build-up is effective enough to merit this indulgence. Though MIRROR doesn't match her previous two directorial efforts, Streisand does once again pull off the various actress/producer/director roles with great efficiently, and this results in an effective star vehicle for the then-54-year-old film legend. Jeff Bridges received a lot of flack for his completely unselfconscious portrayal, but I admire how completely he throws himself into the silly role. Lauren Bacall is brilliantly biting and luminous in her turn as Streisand's mother, a role that earned her first (and so far only) Oscar nomination. Mimi Rogers is also fun as Streisand's (...)younger sister, as is Brenda Vaccaro as her self-deprecating best friend - although Pierce Brosnan is wasted as a gigolo-like suitor. All in all, an enjoyably fluffy film, undeserving of the criticism it routinely receives. About the DVD: This was one of Columbia's first DVD releases, and while the picture and sound quality are great, there are no extras and the menus are hideous."
Mirror Has Two Faces
Kelly | Littleton, Colorado | 03/14/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"While this movie will never win any acclaim or awards, it was a light romantic comedy that hit a home run with me. I liked Jeff Bridges and Barbara Streisand together. They were funny and had good rapport together on screen. "
Reflection of a Dream
Victoria Tarrani | 05/30/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"How seldom is it that we find a movie that delves into issues such as love verses insecurity and self image. The Mirror Has Two Faces is such a film. Barbra Streisand convincingly plays the romance professor who is unsure about her physical appearence and unaware of her beautiful personality. Jeff Bridges is a handsome math professor at the same university who has been screwed over several times by his lovers. Drawn together by fate, these two start out with a platonic relationship, only to realize that they are attracted to each other. Streisand finds her inner strength and beauty after her advances were denied and turns herself into what the media would define as a beautiful woman. What she must realize, and what Bridges's character must realize, is that beauty is from within.Best line: What's the difference what I look like? You never looked at me anyhow.Wow. God slam."
Friendship set on fire
Victoria Tarrani | 04/26/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is about what love and attraction should really be--friendship set on fire. Greg and Rose become friends with a strong emotional connection and because of that, the attraction develops. In the end he admits to her that he wanted her that "horrible night"--even before she remade herself. He fell in love with her inner beauty. He was just trying to live up to his theory about sex ruining things because he was afraid it would ruin the best relationship he had ever had with a woman. Rose had to remake herself and catch his attention and even leave him before he was willing to face the truth (we all know how dense men can be!). I found the movie quite entertaining. Lauren Bacall turns in a great performance as Rose's mother and as always Barbra looked great--no matter how frumpy she tried to be. A movie for anyone who loves a romantic comedy."