The Other Sister 1999 ***

Director Garry Marshall made his name in television with shows like Happy Days and Laverne and Shirley, and scored big with Pretty Woman. His 1999 film The Other Sister has largely been forgotten, but it’s one of Hollywood’s more ambitious attempts to deal with mental health issues. Sure, it’s coated with feel-good sentiment, but there’s also a tacit acknowledgement of genuine issues as Carla (Juliette Lewis) strives for independence, despite the concerns of her mother (Diane Keaton). A romance with Danny (Giovanni Ribisi) gives further reason for concern; The Other sister doesn’t flinch from the notions of sexual activity, even if it equates it via the visual metaphor of a marching band playing 76 Trombones. The Other Sister may be clumsy and manipulative at times, but its heart is in the right place; Marshall deserves some credit for applying his gifts to a difficult subject.


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