15 February 2006 | shearn-2
Hard to see what was the point of this Central Park West "romance"
Can she Bake a cherry pie is a pointless film that perhaps was intended to be heartwarming--the coming together of an overanalytical rationalist and a confused, corny, Sixties-style lovable-airhead character, played by Karen Black. They meet in a café and start seeing each other on the day she was left by her husband, though we never learn why hubby left and it's not obvious in her character. Because we have seen lots of lovable-airhead films, the implication is that suit-and-tie husband couldn't handle her emotionality and whimsicality, yet these are not all that marked. Black's character actually seems a normal enough person (and has a fine singing voice), so we don't necessarily see why she is interesting--that is, how she is going to have to learn to grow, or how this new, badly matched partner will fit her needs. Her whole new relationship is uncomfortably suspect through the movie because it may be an impulsive rebound. The film aims to be character driven but instead is event driven; so and so happens, then the next thing in a one note plod.
The male character was dull--in fact nobody changes. One scene is poignant,where he plays back some home movies while someone's rendering of the ever-superb song "The way you look tonight" plays on top. Yet this scene does not add depth to our lead's characterization, because he is too neurotic to even imagine changing. Neuroses are, by definition, minor worries given excess emphasis, and are not deep, complex or amusing to be around. Halfway through, we know he's going to continue being his one note self.
Production values are poor with smudgy colors.