Monday, March 9, 2009

He's Just Not That Into You

When I heard that the non-fiction, self-help book He’s Just Not That Into You was being made into a movie I rolled my eyes. I totally didn’t understand why that would happen or how it could make a good film. However, now that I’ve seen He’s Just Not That Into You I do have to say that I found the film to be thoroughly enjoyable.

For anyone that’s been living in a cave for the past 5+ years He’s Just Not That Into You is the book that dispels all the romantic mythos that we girls hang onto so tightly, the signals we look for if a guy likes us, the reasons he might not be calling, etc.; the book gives the simple answer – if the guy is not pursing you, he’s just not into you.

To translate this into a movie the screenwriter centers on about 10 characters, all going through various parts and kinds of relationships: Gigi is the single and mingling one who dissects everything from the opposite sex, Connor is hopelessly into Anna, Anna is the hottie who convinces herself the married man will fall for her but dangles the other men in her life on a string, Ben married his college sweetheart Janine but didn’t want to and is trying to find a way out, Alex is the restaurant manager who has shut himself off to the opposite sex thinking he has the game figured out, Neil is the good guy in a committed relationship to Beth but can’t stand the thought of marriage, Beth is the successful working woman who loves Neil but wants a proposal, and Janine senses her marriage is going badly but is distracting herself in every way possible. By using these characters the screenwriter tangles together a complex web of relationships that touches on just about everything under the spectrum of love and life and somehow each and every character manages to undergo a gentle and important arch.

My hat goes off to Ken Kwapis for managing to take such a complex story with a myriad of characters and make it not just into an intelligible movie but an entertaining and charming one. I honestly think that He’s Just Not That Into You is the movie that they were trying to make when Someone Like You was made but He’s Just Not That Into You is infinitely better. I also really enjoyed the transitional device in the film of the “interviews” and titles; it was reminiscent of When Harry Met Sally and worked very well.

One of the best things about this film is the cast. This film has an enormous amount of talent in it and is one of the best ensembles I’ve seen in a very long time.

Director: Ken Kwapis
Writers: Abby Kohn & Marc Silverstein
Gigi: Ginnifer Goodwin
Connor: Kevin Connolly
Anna: Scarlett Johansson
Ben: Bradley Cooper
Alex: Justin Long
Neil: Ben Affleck
Beth: Jennifer Aniston
Janine: Jennifer Connelly
Kelli Ann: Busy Philipps
Mary: Drew Barrymore

Gigi: Maybe his grandma died or maybe he lost my number or is out of town or got hit by a cab...
Alex: Or maybe he is not interested in seeing you again.

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