HouseSitter [1992]

The teaming of Steve Martin and Goldie Hawn would seem to have been sure-fire casting, but Housesitter's writing is never strong enough to sustain it and the film's hit-and-miss quality has more misses than hits. Martin plays an architect who builds his dream house for his high school sweetheart (Dana Delany), then surprises her with a marriage proposal--both of which she rejects. Distraught, he goes back to New York and pours out his heart to a woman he meets in a bar and beds (Hawn), not realizing she is a flaky con artist. She knows a good thing when she hears it and heads for his hometown, moves into the empty dream house, and begins passing herself off as Martin's new wife. Though the writers build in a variety of complications (involving Delany, as well as Martin's parents and boss), the film finds its jokes only in fits and starts, though Martin has a particularly hilarious moment when he must sing to his father in front of a crowd of strangers. --Marshall Fine

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