June 10, 2011

Something Borrowed (USA 2011)

The good thing about Sneak Previews - apart from the surprise effect - is that you get to see movies you normally wouldn't see. The bad thing, of course, is that more often than not these are the movies you couldn't care less about. This was my fate yesterday when I had to suffer trough "Something Borrowed", the latest Rom-Com out of Tinseltown.

The genre of the romantic comedy is probably the most formulaic of them all. The saying goes that if you know one, you know them all. For people who have seen a lot of those chick flicks, that's part of the fun because it somehow makes you feel smarter to know what will happen next. But let's be honest, the main attraction of a romantic comedy is not really what will happen but how it will happen. That and the so-called chemistry between the couple.

So even if you know exactly how the film will end after only five (!) minutes, you can at least expect to get some light entertainment, right?

Not in this case because the initial dilemma (being in love with your best friend's fiancé who loves you too) could be solved immediately but unfortunately the screenwriters extended it to 112 minutes. As a result, the story gets increasingly annoying. The only suspense comes from the question when they will come together and how her best friend will react. But since the characters are mostly self-obsessed and not really likeable, there comes a point when one just doesn't care anymore. The cast isn't very helpful either: Ginnifer Goodwin as the main character is nice but ultimately too boring, Kate Hudson does the party girl well but it's quite pathetic to see that she should be beyond those years now. And Colin Egglesfield may look like a 20 years younger (and even more handsome) Tom Cruise but unfortunately even the latter one's Ray Ban's have more charm...

The film offers a "best of" (or "worst of") of all the incidencts that happen in romantic comedies. As a consequence, the film should not be called "Something Borrowed" but "Everything Borrowed" because of all its borrowed clichés:

  • The sweet and intelligent but less attractive main character? Check.
  • The better looking but shallow (blond) best friend? Check.
  • The perfect-looking love interest coming from a wealthy family who is against the main character? Check.
  • The nice gay friend who gives the main character love advice? Check.
  • The take-it-easy-manchild sidekick? Check.
  • The sex-obsessed friend who ends up alone? Check.
  • The picture-postcard aerial shots of New York and London? Check.
  • The romantic date on a rooftop? Check.
  • The tender piano music complementing romantic scenes? Check.
  • The sudden breakup just when everything seemed to have worked out? Check.
  • The fact that everyone has a lot of money? Check.
  • The love confession in the rain? Check.
  • Charm and sympathetic characters? Missing.


Does that look familiar?

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