A group of interconnected, Baltimore-based twenty- and thirtysomethings navigate their various relationships from the shallow end of the dating pool through the deep, murky waters of married life, trying to read the signs of the opposite sex--and hoping to be the exceptions to the "no-exceptions" rule. Gigi just wants a man who says...
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A group of interconnected, Baltimore-based twenty- and thirtysomethings navigate their various relationships from the shallow end of the dating pool through the deep, murky waters of married life, trying to read the signs of the opposite sex--and hoping to be the exceptions to the "no-exceptions" rule. Gigi just wants a man who says he'll call--and does--while Alex advises her to stop sitting by the phone. Beth wonders if she should call it off after years of committed singlehood with her boyfriend, Neil, but he doesn't think there's a single thing wrong with their unmarried life. Janine's not sure if she can trust her husband, Ben, who can't quite trust himself around Anna. Anna can't decide between the sexy married guy, or her straightforward, no-sparks standby, Conor, who can't get over the fact that he can't have her. And Mary, who's found an entire network of loving, supportive men, just needs to find one who's straight.
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The title and cast are sure to lure women in by the droves -- but surprisingly there's something to like here for guys, too.
Like Love Actually and any number of other ensemble romantic comedies in which we watch a starry cast navigate their way through the treacherous world of romantic relationships, He's Just Not That Into You -- based on the Sex and the City catch-phrase and very loosely on the resulting self-help book of the same name -- focuses on a select group of twenty- and thirtysomethings who find love is just not easy to find and hang on to in the Internet age. Here's the scorecard: Neil (Ben Affleck) loves his seven year live-in girlfriend Beth (Jennifer Aniston), just not enough to marry her; while Beth (Jennifer Connelly) forced marriage on Ben (Bradley Cooper) before he was ready and now he's seriously flirting with seductress. Anna (Scarlett Johansson), who's kinda bored with her occasional sex partner, Conor (Entourage's Kevin Connolly), who would love to get her to take him seriously. Then there's sweet, likeable and lovelorn Gigi (Ginnifer Goodwin), who hasn't had the best of luck with men and takes advice from restaurant manager Alex (Justin Long), who constantly gives his perspective of the harsh realities of dating. Finally, there's good-natured Mary (Drew Barrymore), a newspaper ad sales exec who uses any number of new technologies to meet a man -- usually via her computer.
The well-chosen cast is strong and likeable making the experience of seeing this overlong (at 129 minutes) romantic trifle enjoyable and fun. It's great to see Connelly trying something lighter these days, and as a wife whose marriage is slipping away she manages to be alternately funny and touching. Aniston scores in the teary scene department as a perpetual bridesmaid involved with a marriage-shy guy nicely underplayed by Affleck. Cooper is wryly funny in his wandering hubby role, and Long's romantic advice is dished out with sardonic style and wit. But it's Goodwin who carries much of the load here, and she's endearing in her own way.
Ken Kwapis knows his way around chick flicks, having directed Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants among others, and he shows he's up to the challenge presented by the multi-character storyline - though at times it seems like he's playing traffic cop just keeping the various parts merging into a whole that makes dramatic sense. None of it is earth-shatteringly original, but as a date movie there's more than enough to satisfy the girls -- and the guys.
Hollywood.com rated this film 3 stars.
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