11 February 2008 | stephenm-18
Seen worse. Seen a whole lot worse.
For some people, the romantic comedy genre is there to be sneered at. It's a lower art form subscribed to by the uneducated masses, the same plot regurgitated through a word processor with names, dates and locations changed: ("Girl meets boy, she's feisty, he's snobbish, they don't see eye to eye - How oh how are they ever going to end up together by the end of the movie?"). Admittedly, I'm not the biggest advocate of the ol' romcom, but this film falls into the "watchable" category of romantic comedy. Of course it's phoney and sugar-coated. Of course it has no resemblance to real life -
For goodness' sake it's a romantic comedy! If it wasn't shallow and improbable it'd be called a "drama"! I don't understand people who post comments on this site, taking potshots at films like this for being dumb and schmaltzy. Look at the poster before you go in. If it's got young people with good teeth on the poster, the title is a bit twee and the font is in pastel shades, chances are, it's a romantic comedy. If you don't like that kind of thing don't go in!
Anyway, my girlfriend took me to see this film yesterday (missed Cloverfield) but it was OK. Seriously. It was OK.
Ryan Reynolds is a solid enough lead, with enough comic talent to keep things ticking over. Abigail Breslin is charming too. Kevin Kline seems to growing gracefully into more senior roles, and Rachel Weisz, Elizabeth Banks and Isla Fisher are all comfortable enough as Reynold's love interests.
The script isn't belly-laugh funny but it has it's moments, there's some good use of news footage from the time in which the story is set, and the plot ticks over nicely. There's also a bit of guessing for the audience too, and my bet is you'll stay to end if only to find out how it finishes.
So there it is: a better than average romantic comedy. Not weighty. Not cerebral. Not challenging. Just a mildly diverting story, about a nice bunch of nice looking people having a nice time and getting their nice little lives sorted out. Nicely.
To give this film the scathing it's had in some quarters, is like a food critic cruelly reviewing a bag of crisps. That is to say this film is not meant to be "food for thought" it's just a snack. And if you get your kicks out of inflating your own ego by raving about how much a dumb film like this offended your sensibilities, then "for shame!" is all I can say. You weren't led blindfolded into the cinema. You knew what you were getting into. It should have been obvious from the poster that this film is a romcom.
Trust me, as a man that's been dragged to more than his fair share of romcoms, this one is by no means bad.