Australia is known for being a friendly, laid-back sort of place whose citizens don’t take life too seriously. Pip Karmel’s Aussie film “Me Myself I” exemplifies all of this with a story that has some psychological impact, but that mostly just wants to have fun. Except for the sex and profanity, it could be an installment on ABC’s “Wonderful World of Disney.”
Pamela Drury (Rachel Griffiths) is a successful writer who, upon her 30-something birthday, begins to think maybe she hasn’t done much with her life. Sure, she’s well-off and respected in her field, but her self-esteem is low (note the affirmations taped to her bathroom mirror) and she’s actually rather lonely.
Ruminating on the situation, she realizes that “Mr. Right” came and went 13 years ago, when she turned down a marriage proposal from Robert Dickson. What would have happened if she’d said yes instead?
She gets to find out when she is hit by a car driven by … herself. It’s the version of herself that DID marry Robert Dickson (David Roberts) 13 years ago. Pamela II takes Pamela I to her house, and as soon as her three kids come home from school, Pamela II disappears, leaving a bewildered Pamela I to sort everything out.
Married life, it turns out, is not everything Pamela imagined it would be. Robert, while a decent husband and father, is no Prince Charming — he seems genuinely surprised when Pamela wants to have sex — and the three kids are a handful in themselves. Stacey (Yael Stone) is a rebellious pre-teen; Douglas (Shaun Loseby) is a mouthy soccer player who calls Pamela “dummy”; and Rupert (Trent Sullivan) is an adorable tow-headed kid who hasn’t yet mastered the art of wiping himself after using the bathroom.
For some reason, all of Pamela’s friends have different lives in this version, as if her marrying Robert after all somehow caused THEIR paths to go different places, too. In particular, Ben (Sandy Winton), a man she had flirted with when she was single but who turned out to be married, is in this scenario unmarried. What’s a girl to do? Yes, Pamela is technically married to Robert. But she doesn’t consider it for real, since it’s not actually her life. Or is it?
That’s the dilemma, though it stays pretty buoyant throughout. The sense of humor is definitely Australian, with plenty of naughty-little-boy bathroom and sex jokes. Griffiths is great as Pamela, with her plain appearance and expressive face. The actress is not afraid to toss herself into the situation recklessly, whether it’s comically trying to install a diaphragm or warding off the advances of one of her and Robert’s creepy friends. She’s a strong, able lead for this cotton-candy domestic comedy.
B- (; )