Wednesday, July 8, 2009

DJG / The Break-Up

The Break-Up * * * *
Directed by: Peyton Reed / 2006

Surprisingly Well Put Together…

“The Break-Up” advertised itself to me like another groaner romantic comedy that would go from enjoyable to completely annoying in fifteen minutes, starting bitterly and finishing in sweet predictability. However, I am very surprised with how well put together “The Break-Up” actually is. I am a tad ashamed to have been so dumbed-down by the movie’s trailer, but could you blame me? I’ll try hard to steer this in the direction of my simple enjoyment and surprise of the movie, not of Hollywood’s perpetual dumb-down habits for success and excess. Please don’t get me wrong, as I can find enjoyment anywhere on the movie map, but lately movies like this are getting to be like fish worm date bait. The movie isn’t without fault lines and comes with the formula for comic relief. However, it’s never pushed over the edge in back ‘n’ forth competition like other movies of a similar plot device surrounding the break-up of a couple who must keep living together for rent’s sake. Throughout the film a realistic sense of loss, bitterness, confusion and personal growth is present. Thanks in part to solid performances from Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn who help steer the film, and me, from the predictable sharks of romantic comedy waters. I’d even endorse a sequel, or at least another Tom Hanks & Meg Ryan-esque pairing of this movie couple. -djg

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