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part of a small rebellion | by maryann johanson

the oh-no! DVD of the week: ‘Flirting With Forty’

OMG, it’s so sexy and romantic and awesome and see, old chicks just wanna have fun, too!

Jackie (Heather Locklear, TV’s Spin City) is a recently divorced mother of two vacationing alone in Hawaii for her 40th birthday. Against her better judgment, she allows the hunky, much younger, resident surf instructor (Robert Buckley, TV’s Lipstick Jungle) to sweep her off her feet. What begins as a scorching one-night stand quickly turns into love as she jets off to Hawaii every chance she gets. But with kids, a disapproving ex-husband and friends, and an ocean separating them, real love becomes real tricky. When Jackie loses her balance, it takes her lover to teach her how to get back on the board before she misses the one wave that will change her life. Based on the best-selling novel by Jane Porter.

Wait. Heather Locklear? Heather Locklear and a 40th birthday? Flirting with 40? More like Flirting With 50. Locklear was born in September 1961 (or at least that’s what the public is led to believe), and this flick — which aired on Lifetime in December 2008 — was shot in April 2008. Which means that Locklear was 46 going on 47 when this was made.

Now, I ain’t picking on Locklear here. I’m picking on Hollywood. Locklear looks fine, but she doesn’t look like she’s just turned 40. The only intention here can have been to make 40 look “worse” than it really is, to emphasize that a once a gal hits 40, it’s all over… so she’d better take whatever hunky Hawaiian surfer she can fool into a scorching one-night stand. You know, before he realizes how freakishly wizened she is, or something.

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  • Jan Willem

    I was also born in 1961 and I can assure you there is a difference between being 40 and being (almost) 48. My contemporaries are the likes of George Clooney, Michael J. Fox, Tim Roth and Forest Whitaker – not that I’m comparing myself to them or anything. However, I am eagerly anticipating their roles in mediocre made-for-TV dramas revolving around their frowned-upon relationships with much younger surf instructresses.

  • Paul

    Yeah, I can’t get too upset about this. Unless she’s put on a ton of weight in the last few years, she’s better looking than the average 40 year old even if she’s 48. And some male actors, I believe you were once complaining about one of the Douglas boys, play characters younger than they actually are. It was getting creepy watching Douglas, Ford, and Connery in their 50s making out with actresses in their 20s.

  • mortadella

    These days, I can’t tell how old anyone is anyway.

    What kicks my ass is that casting directors don’t think twice about pairing older guys with younger gals – and in the context of the films, it’s never an issue or even noticed by the other characters in the movie…unless it’s a throwaway line in the form of a joke…like Robert DeNiro in “Righteous Kill” joking about how his much younger girlfriend (played by Carla Gugino) is wearing him out (gag).
    This happens,I think, because producers cater to male fantasies, assuming women never go to movies unless they’re Rom Coms.

    In movies, when an older gal is coupled with a younger guy, that’s what the ENTIRE film is about for god’s sake….except for a few rare exceptions, like “Laurel Canyon,” with Frances McDormand (and she was so cool, vital and sexy in the film, that it feels kinda silly calling her “older” at all).

    Errrr,”Flirting With 40″ appears to be “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” with white folks…or I’m I nuts?

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