Tag Archives: Leslie Mann

How to be Single

How to be Single Poster

Based on the best-selling book by Liz Tuccillo (the co-author of the self-help book turn movie) He’s Just Not That Into You) How To Be Single feature a post Fifty Shades Dakota Johnson and post Pitch Perfect Revel Wilson. But can they bring the box office success if their previous films to this rom-com?

College graduate Alice (Johnson) is taking a break from her boyfriend Josh (Nicholas Braun) to move to New York City. There she meets Robin (Wilson) who teaches her the ways of being single. Meanwhile Alice’s sister Meg (Leslie Mann) contemplates having a baby and dating a younger man Ken (Jake Lacy). Then there’s also determined singleton Lucy (Alison Brie) who’s scouring various internet dating sites for Mr. Right.

It’s not going to break the mold of rom com’s or even box office records but How To Be Single does have enough charm and humor to find an audience. Johnson makes a likeable enough lead although she doesn’t sparkle as much as she did in edgier fare such as A Bigger Slash. My interest in her romantic storylines did sag in the middle. More successful is Alice’s interactions with best buds Robin. Wilson’s Robin is essentially an even rudder Fat Amy. But even though it’s basically the same role as the one that made her famous Wilson still nails it.

I probably found Meg’s storyline the most satisfying as it had the right amount screen time to develop her character with her quest to become a mother and her cute fledging romance with Ken. I felt Brie was underused as Lucy, who was not a greatly developed character. But Brie still manages to make her scenes amusing especially with hot barman Tom (Anders Holms) on the scene. At times it even seems Tom is more of a main character than Lucy.

Sometimes the film can’t decide if it wants to subvert the rom com clichés or embrace them leaving a mixed end result all round. But it’s still a fun, girlie movie and a perfect antidote to all the macho movies of late.
Rating 3.5/5 – an amusing movie with a likeable cast

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The Other Woman

Since Bridesmaids film companies have realised that women-centred comedies can be funny and make money too. Although those kinds of films have still been a bit thin on the ground The Other Woman is the latest attempt to put women at the front and centre of comedy.

Lawyer Carly (Cameron Diaz) thinks she’s met her perfect guy in Mark (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) until she meets his wife Kate (Leslie Mann). Forming an unlikely alliance with the another unknowing mistress Amber (Kate Upton), the three women decide to get their own back on the deceitful Mark.

This is a very silly film and no doubt many people will absolutely hate it, but I loved it. It had me laughing the whole way through which is a good sign for a comedy.

Leslie Mann stole the show as vulnerable, scorned wife Kate who is one big mess after finding out her husband is having affairs behind her back. It could easily have been a very irritating character to watch, but this is probably Mann’s most engaging performance and it was easy to warm to her and sympathise with her plight. Mann also gets a lot of funny lines and makes for a great comedy drunk.

Cameron Diaz’s Carly takes a bit of time to warm up to, she’s not as easily likeable as Mann’s Kate, but once her and Kate become allies she starts to soften up and become a whole lot more fun.As the second mistress Amber, Kate Upton gets the least to do, although that probably works in her favour as this is Upton’s first film role and having her play against two more experienced comedy actresses could have shown any weaknesses. But luckily she puts energy and fun into the role of nice-but dim Amber. While the cheating husband Mark is perhaps a bit one-dimensional but actor Coster-Waldau (best known for playing Jamie Lannister in Game of Thrones) gamely puts his all into the role as he suffers one indignity after another.

The film works best when the women are interacting with each other and their schemes against Mark are unfolding. At times though it seems the film is afraid this may not be enough to hold the audience’s attention so there is the odd toilet humour which I could have done without as it was more cringe-worthy than funny. It’s also a bit slow at the start and doesn’t really get going until after Kate and Carly have met. Still once the girls meet up the film gets really funny.

Rating 4/5-probably won’t appeal to everyone but for me this film was hilarious and features a great performance from Leslie Mann

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