Busy working Mom Kate Reddy (Sarah Jessica Parker) has got to choose between career and family, in I Don’t Know How She Does It (2011; Rated PG-13, contains sexual references).

Investment banker Jack Abelhammer (Pierce Brosnan) is impressed with Kate’s investment proposal which is original and ahead of the pack. Jack takes her on the road for two months impressing the socks off clients who seem likely to invest in her proposal. This is her big career break.

But her issue is divided interests. She’s got one foot in her family and another foot in career, and is not concentrating enough on her family she dearly loves.


The lifestyle of the busy working woman is the focus of I Don’t Know How She Does It.

The first half is a peppering of many busy moments in Kate’s life. She is a working Mom who juggles many hats and even thinks about to do lists lying on bed.

Her commitment is commendable, perhaps endearing, but maybe slipping her off kilter. She tries to be everything to everyone in her sphere of the world. If she could reach out further, she would probably do even more than what’s already on her plate.

This may be the curse of the working woman in modern society. They take on too much. Kate finds that she’s everywhere and this means she lacks concentration in other areas. Her family suffers because she is there, but not there.

In the end, she’s not enjoying life. Girls can do anything, right? Maybe, but when does it all become too much? This is one busy film. One that is saying something’s got to give in the busy (read: hectic) life of a working woman.

It’s not only the women who are in the throes of dropping things off their lists. The men, too: Jack Nicholson’s character, in Something’s Gotta Give (2003), has a relationship with a younger woman. When he spends time with a woman his age he begins to see that a woman his age may be better than a younger woman. Now he can drop the younger woman thing and focus on what’s real.

I think the deeper issue in I Don’t Know How She Does It is that when a busy working woman is juggling so much, she wants to feel fulfilled in all of her coming and goings. Finding fulfillment is the deeper issue.

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