He's Just Not That Into You In Review
Perfect Date Movie
Reluctantly, I went to see He’s Just Not That Into You last night. Seeing the previews, it looked like every romantic comedy that has ever been made. It was at the bottom of my “To See” list, a rental. Surrounded by middle aged women, bubbly, teenage blondes and their unwilling males, I remembered something an acting professor once told me about the audience making or breaking a performance. You have to play to your audience and this movie does just that.
Based on the best selling self-help book by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo which was inspired by a line from the show, Sex and the City, He’s Just Not That Into You is a movie we all can learn from. Whether you are coupled or still seeking “the one,” this movie has something to offer you. Though there are many characters and story lines, this movie most closely follows Gigi Haim (Ginnifer Goodwin). Poor Gigi is a twenty-something singleton looking for love in, as you would expect, all of the wrong places and people. So desperate to be in love, she sees every man as a potential husband and waits pathetically by the phone for these losers to call her. Not until Alex (Justin Long) schools her on the subject of men does Gigi realize what her dates have been doing to her. Her life is one big pickup line.
What I like best about this movie is that all of the characters are connected without them fully realizing it. Gigi works with Janine (Jennifer Connelly) and Beth (Jennifer Aniston). Janine’s husband, Ben (Bradley Cooper), is friends with Beth’s live-in boyfriend, Neil (Ben Affleck). Conor (Kevin Connolly), the guy Gigi is pining over, is flat mates with Alex. He is in love with Anna (Scarlett Johansson) who is having an affair with Ben. Anna receives relationship advice from Mary (Drew Barrymore) who is cyber dating Conor, but has never actually met him or heard his voice. It’s a huge web with love as the spider.
With all of these characters, how do you flesh them out? You don’t. Gigi and Alex, to me, are the most three dimensional. While the other characters come close, it is evident that the scriptwriters wanted to center on Gigi. You sense that the rest of the characters have had their chance at happiness. Gigi, a serial dater, has yet to be in love. Through Gigi, both the other characters and the audience are inspired to figure out what to do with the love they have or to seek the love they want. Ginnifer Goodwin makes an adorable protagonist.
Being a fan of Jennifer Connelly and Drew Barrymore, I wish more had been done with their characters. While Connelly’s character at least had more screen time, Barrymore was wasted. I understand that this was Goodwin’s movie. It just would’ve made more sense (and saved tons of money) to surround her with cardboard cutouts than her supporting actors considering what the director (Ken Kwapis) did with them. (I may be too judgmental.) In every scene without Goodwin, you find yourself wondering where she is. Why is Aniston’s character at a wedding when, across town, Goodwin is experiencing some form of single gal drama? It felt like the writers tried to appeal to every relationship group when it was clear they only wanted to write of the woes of single hood. As I said, this was Goodwin’s movie.
Though a tad lengthy at just over two hours, I enjoyed the movie. The situations are so relatable and embarrassing that you can’t help but laugh. It’s a great date movie though I would not recommend it for a first date.
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