After watching and debating several comedies from the early 90s era, we settled on Only the Lonely for episode 14, season 4. This oft-overlooked movie from Chris Columbus showcases John Candy in a slightly more dramatic role.
As Chicago cop Danny (John Candy) approaches middle age, he begins to wonder if he’s missed out on love. Rose (Maureen O’Hara), his over bearing and opinionated mother, expects him to remain her caretaker forever. Theresa (Ally Sheedy) is the shy girl who catches his heart and forces him to question his relationship with his mother. The story brims with wise old barflys, a sex-starved police partner, a love-starved neighbor, and a selfish brother thankful he got out of the house but perfectly willing to curse Danny with their mother.
The romance and plot are not straight forward. We hit a few twists and have several emotional awakenings throughout the film. We’re gifted with one of Candy’s better dramatic turns. Pairing him with Maureen O’Hara was genius. These two have such fantastic chemistry you’ll wish for more scenes and more movies. You may even believe she walks away with the entire movie. Unfortunately, Sheedy’s Theresa seems either to have been a plot point or cut from the script. There are moments her motivations, while understandable, are not clear within the story.
If you’ve ever wondered what it would take to lure retired Maureen O’Hara off a tropical island to windy Chicago, wonder no more. Enjoy one of John Candy’s lesser known outings and find that film Only the Lonely.