IT IS being billed as a romantic comedy. But as you course though the turf you find there is not much of the romance in as much as the clichéd situation of the heroine being saddled with a problem, just when life is going great guns. Overall, "Raising Helen" is pleasant viewing, if a bit slow and tedious in parts. But making it worth viewing is the presence of Kate Hudson who brings light and cheer to the role especially when you see that it is also about three kids who lose their parents in a car crash.
Can be harrowing, but skimming the surface the director, Garry Marshall, decides that this has to be a `happily ever after' film. He fills it with clichés and tries not to deviate too much from the feel-good factor. Helen Harris leads a carefree life. As executive assistant to the head honcho, Dominique, in a leading modelling agency, she is always on call and very dependable too. Fashion shows and night clubs being indispensable to the boss, her life is turned upside down when her sister dies in an accident leaving the custody of her three children to Helen and not to the other sister, a super mom, Jenny.
Knowing next to nothing about parenting, initially she tries to keep pace with her old lifestyle along with the job of raising the kids. She fails miserably when deadlines go awry and fashion shows turn out to be major nightmares. Plus how on earth does she deal with a teenager who insists on being a rebel? But with not much choice left she quits. But with all the support Helen must find her level and negotiate the pitfalls that come fast and furious and has to learn to be a tough mom and not the cool aunt she has always been. But there is always an option for her. If she cannot cope, the kids can go to Aunt Jenny who is more than capable of handling tough kids.
It is not a film to be analysed or go overboard about. It is a diversion, a pleasant one at that and no more. Besides, watching Kate Hudson is rather enjoyable.
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