Saturday, May 7, 2011
Something Borrowed Movie Review: Rom Com Without the Usual Happily Ever After
Something Borrowed is the big screen adaptation of the Emily Giffin novel of the same name. Although huge fans of the novel won't be running out to theaters to see this time and time again, it does stay true to the novel for the most part. Giffin creates dynamic characters in her novel, but those characters just don't translate well onto the big screen. The film explores the question of love and friendships. What's more important? How far would you go for love despite ruining a best friendship. Where is the line between following your heart and taking the moral high ground? Something Borrowed presents all these questions, but doesn't really get to the heart of the matter (the title of another Emily Giffin novel). So why does the beloved novel fall flat on the big screen? Read on... The Plot: Darcy (Kate Hudson) and Rachel (Ginnifer Goodwin) have been best friends since they were kids. Rachel is a plain-Jane lawyer who always does the right thing. She meets and falls in love with Dex (Colin Egglesfield) when the two are in law school, but humbly passes off the love of her life to her best friend Darcy during a strange dinner encounter that ends with Darcy and Dex going out on a date, leaving Rachel heartbroken and alone. Years later, Darcy and Dex are engaged and Rachel is again left out in the cold. But things change during Rachel's 30th birthday party. Rachel and Dex accidentally? sleep together and vow it will never happen again, but the two realize they have strong feelings for each other despite the fact that Dex is still engaged to Darcy. They spend the rest of the summer stealing longing glances at each other and sneaking around keeping secrets and lying to their friends, although mutual friend Ethan (John Krasinski) soon finds out. So they must choose between following their hearts or doing what is right? But what is right when it comes to love? The Good: Despite the fact that the subject matter is relatively serious, there are lots of witty remarks and funny moments that keep the movie marginally entertaining. John Krasinski marginally saves this mediocre movie with his quick wit and great delivery. Kate Hudson is totally believable in her role. She plays the oh-so-selfish Darcy, who always gets what she wants, but you can't help but be jealous of her as she lives life with flare and excitement. Hudson totally channels her lovable inner-bitch (if there is such a thing) and although you're supposed to dislike her, you can't help but liking her a little. The film is not your typical romantic comedy where everyone ends up living happily ever after. Relationships fail, friendship falter, and not everything is hunky dory at the end. With better writing and some more realistic scenes, this film could have really tugged on the heartstrings of viewers, but it simply grazed over those important and life-changing moments, so many people have experienced. The Bad: Although director Luke Greenfield has a pretty good cast to work with -- rom com queen Kate Hudson is in her element in this film, the cast as a whole just doesn't click. Rachel is supposed to be a mousy girl with a complete lack of self esteem. The audience should be rooting for her, but her actions just make you feel bad for her and she's so down on herself there's not much to root for. Ginnerful Goodwin is a great actress and she plays the part as best she can, but there's not much of a scrip there for her to work with. She is supposed to be the "bad guy" in the film, stealing her best friend's fiance, but it's hard to hate her because she's just so pathetic. You honestly believe she could never land herself a guy like Dex. Colin Egglesfield is the perfect Dex -- in looks that is -- but he has no chemistry or much else to work with. His scenes with Rachel, which should be secret rendezvous and stolen glances are ruined with bad acting. It's hard to figure out what this movie is actually about. Is it about following your heart and finding true love or the bonds of friendship? The confusion of the main character bleeds into confusion for the audience and the movie doesn't have a consistent path. The film struggles between being a comedy and a drama. The subject matter suggests the seriousness of a drama, but the serious scenes are so ridiculous it's hard to take it seriously. The characters spend more time starring at each other with pained looks than saying anything of substance.