Directed by David Mirkin, starring Sigourney Weaver, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Ray Liotta, Jason Lee, Jeffrey Jones and Gene Hackman.

Max (Weaver) and Page Connors (Love Hewitt) are a mother and daughter team who eke out a healthy living conning wealthy, lovesick men. The scam is simple: mother Max dates the men, marries them as quick as their gullibility (and bed patience) allows, then flees with a healthy divorce settlement when she finds new hubby in a compromising situation with sexy incognito daughter Page.

The scam continues until Page signals her intent to break from the duplicity of the family 'business' and start her own life. Mother is understandably loath to see her flee the nest, but reluctantly agrees to her wishes. But first, they must complete one last big job together...

Relocating to Palm Beach, Florida the duo target chain-smoking billionaire businessman William B Tensy (Hackman). Not surprisingly, things go pear-shaped when Page falls in love with laid-back bartender Jack (Lee), and Max is confronted by previous sucker Dean (Liotta).

So far, it may sound like just another one of those 'bittersweet' comedies that Hollywood churns out at a perennially alarming rate. Thankfully, for the most part, it's not. There are quite a few reasons for its success, but the consistency of the script ultimately provides the film's winning formula.

All the performers seem to be having great fun: Weaver as the manipulative Max, Love Hewitt as the sexily seductive daughter Page, and Gene Hackman as the repugnant smoke-monster Tensy. Perhaps the biggest surprise, however, is Liotta, who turns in a hilarious turn as Dean, in a blatant send-up of his mobster screen persona.

Directed by 'Simpsons' writer and executive producer David Mirkin, 'Heartbreakers' is altogether better than the sum of its parts.

Tom Grealis