I can’t pretend like we’ve been looking forward to watching this film for years because we haven’t. We are simply watching it because it is one of the few examples of a film that employs the rare “…” in the actual title. And since we are trying to hit up nine different punctuation marks in titles we definitely need an ellipsis. That’s right! We’re watching Rumor Has It…! This is of course the sequel to The Graduate… kinda. Not the real sequel (because there actually was a book called Home School that was a sequel to the novel The Graduate), but just a film that suggests that certain characters are the “real” life inspirations for the characters in the original novel that then got adapted into the film. That’s basically the entirety of the plot and it sounds like the worst. Let’s go!
Rumor Has It… (2005) – BMeTric: 43.3
(Huh. I declare this a popular below-average film. But look at how it sustains itself at 5.5 … very interesting, kind of like it is a truly terrible movie, no regression to the mean. But I’m not sure I’ve seen such a profile for a slightly below average film yet. It really shot out to a pretty impressive 40 BMeTric as well. All around a pleasant surprise.)
Leonard Maltin – 1.5 stars – While home for her sister’s wedding, Aniston becomes convinced that her late mother, grandmother MacLaine, and future techno-magnate Costner inspired the Charles Webb novel that became The Graduate. Premise is icky (Aniston goes on a fling with a guy she initially thought was her father!) without being pointed. MacLaine gives it a shot with acerbic but unfunny rejoinders. If The Graduate didn’t still “live,” this would be pretty close to grave robbing.
(Now this is a movie Leonard watched. I could kind of predict his attitude: hates it for playing off a far more more interesting and successful film, but probably likes MacLaine in general and so resists writing the whole thing off. From what I remember that ickiness comes through even in the trailer, so I’m not really sure what they were thinking there.)
(Oooof. Let’s just pour out a little bit in recognition that Adele’s song Rumor Has It would have been ALL OVER this trailer if this came out now. Also, Ruffalo playing the shy kind of weird guy … I forgot that used to kind of be this thing. He’s been the Hulk for so long it is hard to even process. The trailer is a throwback for a movie whose ultimate crime was that it feels like it should have come out in 1995)
Directors – Rob Reiner – (Known For: The Princess Bride; Stand by Me; This Is Spinal Tap; A Few Good Men; Misery; The Bucket List; Flipped; When Harry Met Sally…; The American President; LBJ; BMT: North (BMT); Rumor Has It…; Alex & Emma; The Story of Us; And So It Goes; Notes: Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1995 for Worst Director for North; I like Reiner, primarily because I could watch the first five movies on that list any day of the week, almost the epitome of the movies I started watching just as I was “getting into” film and starting to look to the immediate past. His next film has to do with journalists investigating the claim the Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction in the lead up to the Iraq War … yeah, he’s somewhat of a political activist.)
Writers – Ted Griffin (written by) (as T.M. Griffin) – (Known For: Ocean’s Eleven; Tower Heist; Matchstick Men; Ravenous; Best Laid Plans; BMT: Killers (BMT); Rumor Has It…; Solace; Notes: Not in the trivia: Reiner replaced Ted Griffin twelve days into principal photography. Can’t tell why, but Griffin never really directed a feature, so perhaps he realized he was in over his head.)
Actors – Jennifer Aniston – (Known For: Office Christmas Party; Storks; Office Space; We’re the Millers; The Iron Giant; Horrible Bosses; He’s Just Not That Into You; Marley & Me; Bruce Almighty; Cake; Wanderlust; The Switch; She’s Funny That Way; Life of Crime; Rock Star; The Good Girl; She’s the One; BMT: Leprechaun (BMT); Mac and Me (BMT); The Bounty Hunter (BMT); Rumor Has It…; Love Happens; The Break-Up; Mother’s Day (BMT); Along Came Polly; ‘Til There Was You; Horrible Bosses 2; Just Go with It (BMT); Notes: Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2011 for Worst Actress for The Switch, and The Bounty Hunter; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2012 for Worst Screen Couple for Just Go with It, and in 2011 for The Bounty Hunter; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1997 for Worst New Star; Obviously most well known for Friends. Her father, John Aniston, has been on Days of Our Lives since 1986 and has appeared in nearly 2500 episodes.)
Mark Ruffalo – (Known For: Avengers: Age of Ultron; Spotlight; Avengers Assemble; Shutter Island; Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind; Zodiac; Now You See Me; Iron Man Three; Begin Again; Collateral; Foxcatcher; 13 Going on 30; The Last Castle; Where the Wild Things Are; Date Night; Margaret; You Can Count on Me; The Kids Are All Right; Just Like Heaven; Thanks for Sharing; The Brothers Bloom; Infinitely Polar Bear; Blindness; BMT: View from the Top; Rumor Has It…; In the Cut; The Dentist; 54; Windtalkers; All the King’s Men; Now You See Me 2; Notes: Was to appear in Signs instead of Joaquin Phoenix, but he was diagnosed with a brain tumor and had to drop out. It was benign and after brain surgery he was fine.)
Shirley MacLaine – (Known For: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty; Steel Magnolias; Being There; Terms of Endearment; The Apartment; Ocean’s Eleven; Bernie; In Her Shoes; Postcards from the Edge; Artists and Models; Around the World in Eighty Days; Two Mules for Sister Sara; The Trouble with Harry; Defending Your Life; The Children’s Hour; Irma la Douce; The Turning Point; Some Came Running; Guarding Tess; BMT: Bewitched; Cannonball Run II; Rumor Has It…; Valentine’s Day (BMT); A Smile Like Yours; The Evening Star; Notes: Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1985 for Worst Actress for Cannonball Run II; Brother of Warren Beatty. Too much about her to even figure out what to say, but we’ll see her in Cannonball Run II for sure.)
Budget/Gross – $70 million / Domestic: $43,000,262 (Worldwide: $88,933,562)
#6 on the Worst Openings – Saturated chart
(Pretty rough stuff. Number six worst opening is nuts, just a little better than Hoot! … HOOT! We’ve seen the number 9 and 10 on the list, and Victor Frankenstein will be in the mix soon enough.)
#99 for the Romantic Comedy genre
(right above Mannequin. Norbit was the most recent one I’ve (re)watched at a dominating 29th. Romantic comedy really hit a peak from 2000-2010, and since then it has kind of dropped off the map. Perhaps previously it was the be-all-end-all of movies geared towards women? And now with the surge in alternatives romantic comedies are the first to get relegated to VOD? Plausible.)
Rotten Tomatoes – 20% (22/111): This riff on The Graduate has a solid cast, but is too lightweight to fully register.
(Solid cast, so not just Leonard seems to think so. The number of reviews is impressive. This was a big release on the year and it just crashed and burned. I suppose the note about changing directors at the last minute makes it all make a bit of sense though.)
Poster – Rumor Sklogs It … (D-)
(No bueno. Why is there sky in the background? Why is there so much white? Why is the spacing so weird? Why is any of this like this? Only good thing is that they at least tried a little bit on the font… otherwise this is a masterclass on what not to do.)
Tagline(s) – Based on a true rumor. (D)
(Hahaha. Rumor Has It… Based on a true rumor. It really has a nice ring to it. Amateur hour up in here. At least it’s short.)
Keyword(s) – biological father; Top Ten by BMeTric: 48.6 The Ten (2007); 43.3 Rumor Has It… (2005); 25.1 Daddy’s Home (2015); 19.9 The Fifth Estate (2013); 18.7 Dance with Me (1998); 18.2 Duets (2000); 17.9 Mamma Mia! (2008); 16.6 Delivery Man (2013); 10.9 Potiche (2010); 9.6 Dirty Girl (2010);
(None! None of the keywords were particularly good. At least this one had Mama Mia! This keyword should just be called Mama Mia!-esque.)
Notes – Early in the film’s pre-production stages, Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft were strongly considered for the roles of Beau Burroughs and Katherine Richelieu. But when Bancroft died and Hoffman had filming commitments for several other projects, the roles were given to Kevin Costner and Shirley MacLaine. (Oh shit, that would have actually have been cool … for ten minutes and then once the novelty wore off the movie would be just as big of a disaster)
Shirley MacLaine was originally offered the role of Elaine in The Graduate (1967), but turned it down.
Along with President Bill Clinton and Fidel Castro, the picture on the far left is Beau (Kevin Costner) with Rob Reiner (the director). Hugh M. Hefner was originally supposed to be pictured, but Hefner objected at the last minute; Reiner was added in digitally. (Ha)
The Huttinger family house is the same house from Father of the Bride (1991). (fun fact)
The film takes place in 1997. (A period piece!!!! Yes. I hope this is incredibly obvious for no reason)
With only a 35-year age difference between them, Shirley MacLaine was really too young to be playing the grandmother of Jennifer Aniston. (True, Aniston’s father is roughly the same age as MacLaine)