3 Men and a Little Lady (1990)

3 Men and a Little Lady (1990)
 
 

My 3 Dads

I'm doing a commercial for margarine. I'm Count Cholesterol - Jack

Robin Weisman and Tom Selleck in 3 Men and a Little Lady

I quite enjoyed "3 Men and a Baby" despite finding certain parts of the story as unwarranted padding and as such hoped I would enjoy the inevitable sequel "3 Men and a Little Lady" just as much. The amusing thing is I actually enjoyed "3 Men and a Little Lady" a lot more than the original as it built on the unusual situation of Mary, her mum and her 3 dads all living together. And what is more is that it crafts a storyline built around the progression of the unusual family dynamic rather than bringing in some stupid crime element as was the case in the first movie.

A few years have passed since Michael, Peter and Jack turned their back on their bachelor days when Mary and her mother Sylvia entered into their lives and whilst an unusual set up they all mange to work together to bring Mary up. But as Mary has grown up into an inquisitive young girl, Sylvia realises that maybe it's time for her to have a more normal family set up especially as director Edward Hargreave has asked her to marry him. With the prospect of Sylvia not only marrying but moving to England with Mary it causes unrest between Michael, Peter and Jack especially as Peter is harbouring his own feelings for Sylvia. But will he do something about it before Sylvia and Mary leave for ever?

As you would expect coming 3 years after "3 Men and a Little Baby" we get a montage of how things have changed for Peter, Michael, Jack, Mary and her mother Sylvia. Mary is now an inquisitive young girl who is asking some awkward questions about men and women and the whole living together is starting to cause issues as the once fun loving bachelors do their best to behave when Mary is around. But what is more it progresses nicely with Sylvia being central to the movie as she is courted by stage director Edward which ends up upsetting Peter as over the years has fallen for her.

Steve Guttenberg and Tom Selleck in 3 Men and a Little Lady

What follows is not really that original with Sylvia deciding to marry Edward meaning that her and Mary would be moving to England which causes Peter to show his emotions and try and stop the marriage. Built into this is the necessary bad guy element with Edward being a two faced liar who on face value seems to like Mary but in reality wants to pack her off to boarding school at first chance. All of which is just enough to provide enough material to keep "3 Men and a Little Lady" entertaining for its duration.

Where "3 Men and a Little Lady" is at its best is early on when we have Peter, Michael and Jack facing up to the awkward questions which Mary throws at them. It's all very obvious but also amusing as they are embarrassed when she asks what a Penis is. Plus of course you've got the amusing, bordering on the cringe worthy, scene where they perform a rap for Mary before she goes to bed. Things are a little less funny during the second half when things move to England and gags such as Tom Selleck squeezing into a Mini is frankly a bit lame. But it still is funny especially with Fiona Shaw delivering an outrageously funny performance as a Jolly Hockey Sticks head mistress who takes more than a shine to Peter.

As for the returning cast well Tom Selleck, Steve Guttenberg and Ted Danson all fall back into the same slick shtick that they delivered so well the first time around. And what is nice is that they feel more at home as the characters have progressed and they all have a more fatherly aspect often with a subtle comic slant. Even Nancy Travis comes across as more comfortable delivering a solid performance as Sylvia who is the catalyst for all the change.

But in many ways it is the supporting cast who help make "3 Men and a Little Lady" in my opinion a better movie. As already mentioned Fiona Shaw delivers wonderful over the top ness as Elspeth Lomax and Christopher Cazenove delivers just the right amount of two faced villainy as Edward Hargreave.

What this all boils down to is that for me "3 Men and a Little Lady" is actually a better movie than "3 Men and a Little Baby". The whole storyline has a much more natural feel to it with the unusual family dynamic providing many of the issues. But it is the constant stream of comedy which makes it more fun and whilst some of the humour borders on the cringe worthy it leaves you with a smile on your face.