PopEntertainment.com

It's all the entertainment you need!

 

FEATURE STORIES MOVIE REVIEWS MUSIC REVIEWS BOX SET REVIEWS TV SHOWS ON DVD CONTESTS CONCERT PHOTOS

 

  FEATURE STORIES
  INTERVIEWS A TO E
  INTERVIEWS F TO J
  INTERVIEWS K TO O
  INTERVIEWS P TO T
  INTERVIEWS U TO Z
  INTERVIEWS ACTORS
  INTERVIEWS ACTRESSES
  INTERVIEWS BOOKS
  INTERVIEWS DIRECTORS AND SCREENWRITERS
  INTERVIEWS MUSIC
  INTERVIEWS OSCAR NOMINEES
  INTERVIEWS THEATER
  IN MEMORIAM
  REVIEWS
  MOVIE REVIEWS
  MUSIC REVIEWS
  CONCERT REVIEWS
  BOX SET REPORT CARD
  TV SHOWS ON DVD
  MISCELLANEOUS STUFF & NONSENSE
  CONCERT PHOTOGRAPHY
  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
  CONTESTS
  LINKS
  MASTHEAD
  EMAIL US

"WILD YEARS-THE MUSIC & MYTH OF TOM WAITS" BY JAY S. JACOBS

AVAILABLE IN BOOK STORES EVERYWHERE!

 

www.wbshop.com

PopEntertainment.com > Reviews > Movie Reviews > The Ugly Truth

MOVIE REVIEWS

THE UGLY TRUTH (2009)

Starring Katherine Heigl, Gerard Butler, Bree Turner, Eric Winter, Nick Searcy, Jesse D. Goins, Cheryl Hines, John Michael Higgins, Kevin Connolly, Bonnie Somerville, Holly Weber, Yvette Nicole Brown and Vicki Lewis.

Screenplay by Robert Luketic.

Directed by Robert Luketic.

Distributed by Columbia Pictures.  101 minutes.  Rated R.

 Shop Chocolate.org 180x150

The Ugly Truth

While it is certainly not a record, it does not bode well for Katherine Heigl’s movie career that she has made essentially the same movie three times straight.  Smart, sexy, romantic, neurotic career woman who is so consumed by work that she is amazingly single and dateless meets a man who is the polar opposite of everything she is looking for in a mate.  It is hate at first sight, but somewhere during their bickering a flame ignites a passion neither one expects or can contain, but neither one is willing to let on their feelings for the other. 

Granted it is a pretty standard romantic comedy conceit.  Sandra Bullock has played this role at least a dozen times over her career.  However, Sandra is clever enough to mix these characters in with other varied types – the plucky girl saving the day, the jaded cop, the haunted ex-wife, the literary figures and the mooning doctors in love with a time traveler. 

In the few years since Grey’s Anatomy revived Heigl’s long-dashed film career, she has squandered the opportunity by essentially playing the same role over and over – in films that consistently have had steadily diminishing returns.  Knocked Up was a clever, if slightly over-hyped movie.  27 Dresses was rescued from its stock romantic comedy moves by a better-than-the-movie-deserved performance by Heigl.  However, no one or nothing can redeem The Ugly Truth. 

It’s not horrible; mind you, just horribly mediocre. 

There is nothing surprising or interesting which happens in the running time of The Ugly Truth – and frankly the romantic leads, while both physically gorgeous, have very little chemistry together. 

Heigl plays Abby, a hard-working and driven TV producer who handles a morning TV show in Sacramento, CA.  The show stars an uptight aging anchor and his younger wife (very funny comic pros John Michael Higgins and Cheryl Hines are better than their roles here) who are having marital problems, and the malaise is spreading to the show’s ratings. 

As a last desperation move, the station manager hires a popular-but-controversial public access cable show host named Mike Chadaway (Gerard Butler) – who specializes on cynical romance advice about men.  If you saw Hes Just Not That Into You, you saw most of the advice that Butler gives already… coming out of the mouth of Justin Long.  (By strange coincidence, Kevin Connolly, who played Longs best friend in that movie, has a small part here as a guy on a disastrous blind date even worse than the disastrous blind date he had in Hes Just Not.)

It’s typical stuff: guys want an angel in the living room and a hooker in the bedroom; if you want a guy to like you then pretend you don’t care about him; men don’t care about clothes or shoes, they just want to see you naked; if you don’t want to have sex with yourself, he won’t want to either; men are incapable of selfless love; the ideal man is just that – a romantic ideal. 

A lot of it is funny and politically incorrect, but a lot of it is bullshit, too.  In the meantime, the audience is wondering how this guy could afford his cool bachelor pad when he has been working full time as a public access cable host, ferchrissakes.

Of course when they start working together, it is hate at first sight.  They are oil and water – she is a professional who believes in journalistic ethics, he is a loose cannon who has no scruples, but does have a good camera manner. 

To prove his worth for her, Butler bets her that he can make the gorgeous doctor who moved in next door fall for her.  If he can, she will work with him as an equal and allow him to be himself on the show.  If his schemes don’t work, he will quit. 

You all know where this is going, don’t you? 

It all becomes a Cyrano-without-the-nose situation – the self-proclaimed sex expert coaches her to get together with the hunky doctor, at the same time as he realizes that she may be the first woman he could fall in love with for many years.  She is torn between the perfect guy and the messy, cynical, piggish co-worker. 

Hmmm, I wonder who she’ll end up with? 

The dialogue is kind of fresh but the situations all feel rehashed – particularly an extended restaurant scene which is supposed to be a showstopper but feels very much like a rip-off of When Harry Met Sally.  (A movie which handled the scene much more tactfully and cleverly, by the way.)  The two lead characters refuse to acknowledge their feelings, fight over stupid things, but everyone else realizes they are meant to be together

Frankly, it could have all gotten there much more quickly had they just acted like real human beings instead of clinging to their romantic comedy stereotypes.  For two people who are smart and supposedly spend much time – personally and professionally – figuring out human relationships, they both make all the wrong moves at all the wrong times Sometimes it is hard to believe that these two people despite their obvious hotnesscould ever have any kind of relationship with anyone other than themselves.

The Ugly Truth is that this movie doesn’t really seem to understand either women or men.

Ken Sharp

Copyright ©2009 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: July 24, 2009.

RETURN TO MOVIE REVIEWS MENU

LinkShare  Referral  Program

125X125

Shop Aeropostale

Copyright ©2009   PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: July 24, 2009.

 

Enter Gotham City with Batman Costumes from Spirit Halloween! Protect or destroy the city as Batgirl, Robin, or the Joker. Shop now!