User Reviews (11)

Add a Review

  • The thing that struck me most about Partner(s), aside from the fact that it's funny and romantic and features a talented and attractive cast, is "how far we've come." By this I mean that only a few years ago one would have expected a film about a straight man who (for various plot reasons) must pretend to be gay, to have featured offensive gay stereotypes and homophobic comments/reactions by at least some of the characters, none of which is present in this delightful and charming film. Dave's roommate and best friend is a gay man; when Dave "comes out," he is accepted by co-workers and family; he doesn't try to or feel the need to "act" gay; and finally, Dave himself seems to feel no embarrassment or shame in telling people he's gay. In fact, the only reason he wants to come out as straight is because he's falling in love with a woman and pretending to be gay gets in the way. There's a funny subplot involving two male co-workers that plays with straight males' discomfort with "gay stuff," and hints that these two supposedly straight guys may be protesting a bit too much. Though at heart a boy-girl romance, Partner(s) does deal intelligently with issues of coming out to parents, gay sex roles, gay men involved in dishonest relationships with women, etc. The cast is made up of very talented and photogenic mostly TV actors, and though most likely low budget, has very much a big movie feel. If I have one complaint, it's that this is one movie which would have worked better with openly gay actors cast in the gay roles. Since Partner(s) is about a straight man pretending to be gay, the film loses some effectiveness because (with the exception of out actor Reichen Lehmkuhl, who has only a bit part) *all* the actors in gay roles seem to be straight men pretending to be gay, and to tell the truth, I didn't buy any of them as gay (especially Sean McGowan and Bru Miller as Michael Ian Black's gay friends, who registered zero on my gaydar). But other than that, a film which straight and gay people can enjoy equally, and a must see for straight men who could do with a bit more contact with "the gays."
  • gradyharp17 December 2005
    'Partner(s)' turns out to be a far better little film than expected. Not that there is anything original about this oft told variation of posing to be something you're not in order to take advantage of career development only to have that posing backfire. But Dave Diamond's script and direction and the presence of an attractive, bubbly and capable cast make this little piece of fluff float.

    Tables are turned in a competitive law firm where an important case is to be assigned, a case involving sex discrimination over a gay employee. Dave (Jay Harrington) and Katherine (Julie Bowen), lovers in the past, vie for the assignment that will most assuredly result in being granted full partner ship in the firm. The company involved happens to include a cute young lass Lucy (Brooke Langton) who lives in the same apartment with Dave (Dave happens to room with a gay guy Christopher - Michael Ian Black - but Dave is straight). Lucy eyes Dave but mistakenly thinks Dave is gay, a fact that she feels will help her father's company in the lawsuit if they are represented by a gay lawyer (politics, you know...). Dave goes along with the charade, tells his company he is gay, wins the assignment leaving Katherine jealous, knowing that Dave is NOT gay. The remainder of the story revolves around the cat and mouse game between Dave and Katherine and Dave and Lucy's mutual attraction that interferes with his job. There are many funny side characters who constantly comment on what the gay mind is like. But the story ends well, with the film being a vaguely funny if very superficial view of what being gay is all about.

    Not a great film but certainly an entertaining one. Sort of an extended au courant soap opera, it works fairly well on the big screen, largely due to the sustained light touch with which it is delivered. Grady Harp, December 05
  • nyclajd17 December 2005
    Just watched this again, I liked it even better this time. I am a lawyer and that subplot was portrayed correctly, but this was really just a standard romantic comedy, although funnier than most. The acting was excellent, including the supporting characters. I don't think this was ever released in theaters but I see it was on TV, it looks a lot more professionally made than many other independent films I have seen and in some places is quite beautiful. There are some really funny moments that are unrelated to the love story, and there are some tender moments that were well-written and well-acted. The movie seems a bit short at 90 minutes, but I prefer that to a movie that is padded or has a lot of boring exposition.
  • Because I consider myself a harsh critic, I was really surprised by how much I liked this film. I thought it was just a very well told and well acted story. A good adult comedy about people working at a law firm is difficult to pull off, but this movie does it. I really like Julie Bowen and I'm surprised she played 'the bitch' role so well. Only because I find her to be very likable. The guy that played her assistant was really funny also. Jay Harrington was very good. I never saw him in anything before. I think he's a good comedic lead. Not too 'over the top.' It was refreshing. As I'm thinking back about the movie now, I'm smiling. That's how I know I liked it. It was just a good, smart, and funny film.
  • I rented this film at a friend's suggestion and was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. I was anticipating a variation on the "fake gay-fish-out-of-water" theme where a character has to (allegedly hilariously) pretend to be gay for some reason. That is not at all what this film is about. Yes, the lead is mistaken as gay, but he does not suddenly change and act differently, it is the views of others around him that change, which makes the film much more interesting. Not to say that the film makes any huge social commentary, but it also does not portray gays as "others" which was refreshing. At its heart, this simply a well made, funny, heterosexual romantic comedy which has a gay plot which is respectful to people of all sexual orientations. Some may find it a bit light in tone and heft, but I found it exactly correct for a romantic comedy. And best of all, it was actually both funny and romantic.
  • NJMoon15 December 2005
    PARTNER(S) is an extremely watchable film. The story centers on a young lawyer looking to be made partner in his law firm so he allows a client to think he's gay. Although he lives with a gay friend, he's anything but. Convincing everyone is the film's main comic thrust. Complications ensue, but (naturally) none that can't be overcome neatly in 90 minutes. This film has an upbeat and polished feeling that helps compensate for it's minor shortcomings. The acting is good, the writing is competent and the soundtrack and photography are slick. Our hero is cut straight (pardon the pun) from the "Will & Grace" mold, complete with funky hair (he never really looks quite professional enough, even dressed to the nines). In fact, this could easily be a less manic episode of "Ally McBeel". If there's anything this light comedy lacks it is bite. Everything's a bit too easy to digest but for those looking for a light snack, it's a pleasant enough diversion.
  • drsunshine224 September 2005
    I originally tuned in to watch this film purely to see Brooke Langton (Lucy in the film) but was actually pretty entertained by the film. Jay Harrington did a great job and Julie Bowen played a great bitch. Ian Michael Black also did a great job as Jay Harrington's "gay partner."

    The story was fairly predictable, but there were a couple of little twists that made it amusing. The acting was easy going and not over the top.

    Of course, the star of the film, in my opinion, was Brooke Langton. She is, by far, the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. I wish she was in more films.
  • I really enjoyed this film, which surprised me, because I expected a predictable "straight guy tries to be gay" plot. The actors are inventive and quick, which helps with a somewhat trifling plot. It's pretty clear where things are going, but you don't really feel taken for a ride, which is rare in this type of film. It's a surprisingly well-acted and quick-moving story that avoided obvious twists and complications--until the last ten minutes, that is, when it quickly falls apart and feels fake. For some bizarre reason the obvious resolutions don't take place, and instead you get a forced and awkward wrap-up. It's a shame to see a decent film ruined like this. It almost seems like someone "up there" ordered a change in the script to make the film bland and boring at the very end. Too bad. It was off to a good start and middle.
  • Dave (Jay Harrington) and Katherine (Julie Bowen) are rivals for the one partner opening at a successful law firm. Dave is smart and scrupulous while Katherine is as despicable and conniving as they make them. One day, Dave is specifically asked to handle a discrimination case and he jumps at the chance. With such a high profile, the case will surely enhance his chances to make partner. He is beaming until he learns why he was selected! It seems the client believes him to be gay and, thus, best suited to handle the suit in question, a gay, work-related discrimination case. But, Dave is straight, having eyes only for women. Yet, if he refuses the assignment, Katherine is certain to take over. Therefore, Dave decides to play the role of a gay man. Things get complicated when a beautiful woman named Lucy (Brooke Langton), the defendant's daughter, garners Dave's affections. Can Dave win the case quickly, so he can declare his love for Lucy? This is a funny and romantic film but its gay themes make it a touchy one for some viewers. How does one "act gay" without playing a stereotype, for starters. And, is the resulting depiction something to be laughed over, at all? Everyone loves a case of mistaken identity, its true, but this plot seems guaranteed to offend the audience at some point. On the other hand, Harrington is really quite wonderful as the sensitive lawyer and Bowen has her she-devil role down pat. Langton and the other cast members give nice performances, too. Then, too, the costumes are very fine, as are the settings and production values. If you adore funny tales of love, you should probably take a chance with this one, as Hollywood can not seem to churn them out fast enough for the true romcom fan. But, if you are looking for a movie that will suit a wider audience, you might want to try While You Were Sleeping or Return to Me instead.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The problem I had with this movie is that it's essentially a sitcom premise stretched out to 90 minutes, although fortunately, that spares us the set up/punch line every few minutes route and the laugh track. The story is also predictable and has been done before, at least several times in the last 10-15 years, usually guy pretends to be gay to get the girl, not for career advancement, but I assume this is a rip off, at least conceptually, from the 2001 French film, Le Placard, (aka The Closet).

    That's another problem with this film: there are some good concepts but they aren't well developed. They discuss how to make the Dave character pass for gay and its nice to see they don't make any effort to change his behavior (i.e. Victor/Victoria's "more shoulder, remember you're a drag queen" or similar from Mrs. Doubtfire) but since they don't develop his character very much, you don't understand why he's into Bette Davis movies and it seems strange he would have a good friend who's gay and would move in with him, but not have any clue about some basics such as what a top or bottom is.

    The performances were adequate to fine, with some excellent work by a few people. Reichen Lehmkuhl really needs to get a new agent who will get him some bit work where he can keep his shirt on. I also agree that the "gay guys" don't do a good job. Micheal Ian Blank's gay friends at "brunch" (Sean McGowan and Bru Miller) in particular, shouldn't have been mouthing some of their lines based on what they wore and looked like. I kept thinking that the sub-plot with the two make co-workers (roommates themselves) of Dave's would be resolved with one or both of them turning out to be gay, which may have more sense, otherwise I would agree that the time spent on them was excessive after a point.

    Some good ideas and the execution was technically fine, but it feels unfinished, unpolished and like a first draft, not a feature film.
  • I can sum this movie up using 20 words or less. Way too predictable of a story line with potential to be funny but instead falls flat on its face. See, 19 words, however, I didn't completely pan this flick with just one star but instead decided to bump it up to two stars due to the fact that Julie Bowen is smoking hot and provided just enough eye candy to keep me from ripping the DVD right out from the machine and blowing it up with an M80. My advice, take the $4.00 rental fee you would have paid to see this movie and just send it right to me as an advance thank you for saving you the time and frustration of having to sit through this train wreck, or you may want to send me the $50.00 replacement fee you would have been charged from taking out your twelve gage to use this piece of garbage as skeet shooting practice.