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4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
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on 10 May 2006
Another sit-com type, light-hearted, and feel good movie that got ravaged by the critics when it was released in the theatres. Rumor Has It isn't all bad, in fact, largely due to the performances of the A-list cast members, it's a pleasant little screwball comedy occasionally peppered with some clever dialogue. Although the movie's denouement doesn't really live up to the promise of it's opening, there's lots of fun to be had and there's something intrinsically likeable about all the characters.

Sarah Huttinger (Jennifer Aniston) and her boyfriend Jeff (Mark Ruffalo) are on their way to her ditzy younger sister's wedding in Pasadena. Sarah and Jeff also plan to get married, but of late, a feeling of insecurity has been plaguing Sarah. Her initial diffidence is reinforced when she learns that members of her family were the inspiration for the book and 1967 film, The Graduate - and she just might be the offspring of the liaison.

Jeff is initially weary of Sarah's investigations, but when he discovers there's a huge question revolving around the date of her birth, Sarah is compelled to seek out the truth. Was her Granny Catherine (Shirley MacLaine) in fact Mrs. Robinson? And was that Benjamin Braddock, so famously played by Dustin Hoffman, in fact an entrepreneurial Internet shark called Beau Burroughs, played by Kevin Costner?

It's all terribly far fetched and the material is undoubtedly light-weight, contrived and rather predictable, but director Rob Reiner imbues his characters with such a fine sense of loving earnestness that it is impossible not to get caught up in all the shenanigans of the Huttinger family. Shirley MacLaine gets the best lines as sharp-witted, cynical and world-weary Catherine who tosses alcohol fuelled acerbic barbs at the drop of a hat.

By the time Sarah wakes up at a seaside villa in San Francisco not knowing where she is, perhaps enamored of her new potential father, we know we have been kidnapped by the fantasy. And as the main story begins to wear out steam, Reiner beefs up the screenplay, with subplot of Sarah's neurotic sister, Annie (Mena Suvari) and then introduces a zany character (Cathy Bates), who was around at the time and knows a few secrets.

It's thanks to the charisma of Aniston, Ruffalo and Kevin Costner as the aging Romeo, the smooth-talking classic charmer that the movie mostly works. Ruffalo - who is always good - manages to bring some of his ineffable charm to the role of Jeff, and Aniston, who has the central role of the tortured, conflicted, self doubting and generally messed up 20-something trying to find herself, is her usual competent and quirky self.

I guess you could wrap up Rumor Has It by saying it's a film with a meagerly clad premise that works as a type of cheery and optimistic farce, but don't expect anything that rises above mediocrity. Mike Leonard May 06.
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VINE VOICEon 13 June 2006
This is a slightly above-average romantic comedy, but would have been much less so if it weren't for the luminescence of the star power assembled by Rob Reiner.

Jennifer Aniston plays Sarah Huttinger, a cutesy-pie, ditsy and often confused young woman, who is engaged to a perfect man (Mark Ruffalo) but who is unsure of her feelings towards marriage. Now living in New York, she and her fiancé travel to her hometown of Pasadena to attend her sister's wedding, and while there, events lead Sarah to the shocking revelation that her family may have inspired the story of "The Graduate", and that the timing of her birth raises a few questions about her biological father.

Her mother having passed away when she was nine, Sarah confronts her grandmother (a show-stealing brilliantly cast Shirley MacLaine), and then sets off on a man-hunt for Beau Burroughs (an unbelievably charming and entertaining Kevin Costner), the man who inspired the Benjamin Braddock character.

Doing her detective work efficiently, she tracks him to San Francisco, where he puts some of her fears to rest on the one hand, but stirs up a hornet's nest with the other. Her relationship with her fiancé deteriorates rapidly, but when she is called upon to calm her sister's anxieties about marriage, she realizes that she should listen to herself sometimes on matters of the heart.

A shaky script that is admirably supported by the cast, but all the kudos belong to Shirley MacLaine who made this movie watchable.

Hey hey hey.- 3.5 stars

Amanda Richards
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on 31 July 2008
I had very low expectations as the reviews were very negative when it was released. I also think I heard that it had a troubled production as the original director was fired after the first day of filming, and I think Jennifer Aniston disowned the film. I only bought it because I found a Blu-Ray copy on sale for £1. I took a chance on it and I was surprised that it was a perfectly competent if unremarkable light weight drama with a little hint of comedy. The Graduate connection is a bit of a red herring as it's really just used as a set up to an unconnected story.

It's not a great film, and it has a few longueurs during its second half as it starts to run out of story (the film would probably be better at 60 minutes in length). It's a bit pointless in the end and you do wonder why it was even made, but it's a pleasant enough viewing experience. The incest sub-plot is a bit odd, and as it's an expensive glossy Hollywood movie, they don't get much mileage out of it as they keep everything as tasteful as possible.

The Blu-Ray disc looks good though I doubt it's a significant improvement upon the DVD version. If anything high definition might work against it as it makes the film look more like it was shot on video tape instead of warm vibrant film.
I find that all movement (actors walking, cars driving or the camera moving) has a strange floating, bobbing feel to it. I assume this is because everything stays in focus much better than it does on VHS and DVD, and it is just something you will quickly get used to. Also background scenery is clearer than DVD, but this is hardly something to get excited about.

I think I can maybe spot the joins between 1st unit (the actors) and the 2nd unit (long shots of buildings, shots of cars on roads, action scenes etc). The shots not involving the actors look like archive footage that has been inserted into the film (there is a long shot in the middle of the Casablanca Ball scene without the actors that looks particularly unconnected to the rest of the sequence).
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HALL OF FAMEon 1 March 2006
Rumour has it that 'Rumor Has It' is a pretty good film. This will by no means be an Oscar contender, but as a pleasant diversion on a weekend afternoon, or possibly as a date movie (for those who still go on dates), this could be a winning movie. Jennifer Aniston, late of 'Friends', plays a role that is in many ways reminiscent of the Rachel role - she is a transplanted New Yorker, returning home to L.A. (actually, Pasadena, which becomes a running joke) with her as-yet-unannounced fiancé to attend her younger sister's wedding. We learn all of this in the first few minutes, possibly before the credits are done scrolling on the screen - the frenetic pace of 'Friends' is still here.
Rumour has it that there was a family in Pasadena that the film 'The Graduate' is based upon - Sarah (Anniston) fixates upon the idea that this may be her family. She questions her grandmother (Shirley MacLaine, but don't call her grandmother), who tells of a possible affair her mother had with a playboy before her marriage (Kevin Costner, now a dot-com mega-millionaire). Sarah goes off without her fiancé in search of her mother's past, but finds a past of her own, of a sort.
Lots of twists and turns in the film have the characters racing up and down the coast of California in search of the past, the future, and the truth, which ends up being both expected and unexpected in this complicated but easily-followed plot.
There aren't major effects and major surprises here. The situational comedy is very much in keeping with an extended version of a comfortable television show, even with the star power of MacLaine and Costner backing Anniston up. The writing is serviceable with occasional flashes of true wit, and the pace of the film is even and pleasant. In all, this is a good film, well worth seeing for a bit of entertainment. Director Rob Reiner does have a talent for good films, and this is one of them.
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on 9 January 2011
Rumour has it tells the story of Sarah who has never felt that she fitted in with her family. On the eve of her sister's wedding she learns that her mother had a fling and that the man that raised her might not be her real father. Sarah lost her mother when she was just nine years old and she had been struggling with this all her life. The might-be-father is played by Kevin Costner. His character has slept with Sara's mother and grandmother. Can he make it with three generations? Costner is suave and sexy in the older guy role and there is a real chemistry between him and Aniston. Sarah is also engaged to her handsome lawyer boyfriend but she doesn't seem to be able to really commit.
The film is loosely based around "The Graduate" with Shirley Maclaine playing the Mrs Robinson character and Costner being Benjamin.
Aniston is a fine actress and this is the best film I've seen her in. She doesn't have a wardrobe of flashy clothes or tonnes of make up yet looks effortlessly gorgeous. Her slightly imperfect face lends itself to comedy and it is nice to see an actress who still has a full range of facial expressions.
My only gripe with this film is that Shirley Maclaine is suposed to be Sarah's grandmother. She looks far too young. This film is engaging and fun.
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on 7 June 2013
Watching this movie brought back great memories of the 1960s film "The Graduate", (which I saw at the cinema when it first came out), and using the story of Benjamin Braddock and Mrs Robinson was a really good idea for 'the rumour' and for the comic situations it created in this movie, which incidentally has a great cast. Jennifer Aniston is an excellent choice for the part of the granddaughter, who picks up on the idea that it may just be possible that her feisty grandmother could be the original real-life Mrs Robinson, portrayed in "The Graduate". AND did this make her the daughter of Ben (Benjamin Braddock)?, whom she discovers is really called Beau Burroughs (Kevin Costner).

All will be revealed in a cleverly scripted story woven around the Huttenger family. Kevin Costner plays a really attractive, (slightly) older, very intelligent man, who appears to be irresistible to all the female Huttengers. Mark Ruffalo, and Shirley MacLaine also star with a short appearance by Cathy Bates. By the way, it really helps if you've seen "The Graduate" before watching this, (I imagine most of us have) to understand the basis of the rumour. A really entertaining movie.
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on 5 November 2008
From the back of the box i was expecting a bridget jones type of movie with emphasis on the tarts and vicars scene but i was sadly disappointed and felt like i had been ripped off with my purchase.
The plot was pathetic and i was amazed that such good actors would stoop to such low scripts.
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on 23 December 2016
What a load of crap.
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VINE VOICEon 23 September 2008
I thought the premise of the film was a great idea: the story of a woman who discovers that the story of The Graduate was true - and it was her family who were the Robinsons...

But the film never really clicks into gear. Shirley MacLaine is great as the feisty grandmother, but Kevin Costner simply plods through it all. But the biggest mistake was Jennifer Aniston. Yes, she's very easy on the eye; but all she does is 'happy-pouty' or 'sad-pouty' - and that's about the limit of her emotional range. Quite simply she isn't a very good actress. And this film needed a really good female lead to pull it up to the mark.

If you like romantic comedies, this fills a wet Sunday afternoon when you have nothing better to do. Otherwise, don't bother.
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VINE VOICEon 2 June 2006
Sarah Huttinger (Jennifer Aniston) suspects that her granny, Katharine Richelieu (Shirley MacLaine) is Mrs. Robinson; Coo coo ca-choo. To make things worse this leads her to believe she may be the offspring of a different union (the timing was right).

The film is about Sarah's search for the truth and the people she encounters.

People watched this for different treasons some watched for Jennifer Aniston of "Office Space" fame. Others said "who is Jennifer I am watching for Shirley MacLaine. Still others were intrigued with where the story was going. They used ancient phone technology to give the film a period piece feel.

In the end the presentation was trite and forced with little chemistry or surprise.
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