Saturday, 14 February 2009

I'm just not that into you. In layman's terms, this means you suck

NB: Contains Spoilers

I lost two hours of my life last night. Two whole hours I will never get back. On top of that travesty I had to spend it cooped up in a freezing cold cinema with a load of high-pitched squealing women. This is not fun. And never will be.

Have you guessed yet? I went to see He’s Just Not That Into You. I should have known, especially with a title I struggle to speak. They should have called it ‘You’re Ugly and Boring.’ Or ‘Leave Me Alone.’ It may not be as nice but it’s easier to pronounce.

He’s Just Not That Into You is a tricky little film disguised as a chick flick. Using the same format as Love Actually, it weaves a twisted web of stories all interlinked because, you know, it’s such a small world. At the core of this sorry mess are women. Women’s issues with men. Women’s insecurities over men. Women’s embarrassing behaviour because of men.

Chick flicks usually cheer me up. That’s what they’re supposed to do. They’re not made to make an impression or to win Oscars. They’re there to champion the belief that a happy ever after is possible. They should put a smile on your face. The only look on mine was one of sheer embarrassment. With all that women-bashing, I felt ashamed I was one. It made me want to strap down my breasts, cut off my hair and book myself in for a sex change.

The film’s narrator Gigi (Ginnifer Goodwin) was likeable to start. But eventually, her escapades made me cringe. Do women seriously sit by the phone, waiting for it to call? Do we stalk a guy whose date we didn’t enjoy on the off chance that he’s the one? The whole thing was so unrealistic I wanted to slap her. Or possibly the writers. I’m still undecided on that one.

Gigi’s colleague Janine (Jennifer Connelly) was so frigid and uptight, I felt no sympathy when her husband Ben (Bradley Cooper) cheated on her with Anna (Scarlett Johansson). Anna’s friend Mary (Drew Barrymore) had all the good lines, well, all three of them. That probably matched the amount of screen-time she was given too.

Ben’s best friend Neil (Ben Affleck) consistently resisted marrying his live-in girlfriend of seven years, Beth (Jennifer Anniston). This was plausible; some people don’t believe in marriage. But with a few helpful plot devices everything is solved pretty quickly. Just like that. In the past I would have been one of the women ooh-ing and ahh-ing at this point, but the whole mess was too contrived to accept. Is a happy, believable cliché too much to ask?

On that note, I'm going to utter the words I never thought I would say: they don't make 'em like they used to!

Okay it's official: I'm past it.


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