Sunday, March 20, 2005


Four thumbs up! Two from me, two from The girl. This is a chick flick that guys can enjoy as well. It's a basic romantic comedy, but it follows two main couples, plus the viewpoint is mostly from the male perspective on romance and dating (and how they either screw it up or are misunderstood and thereby blocked from succeeding, depending on your perspective). But it's not just straight guys who can identify with the "guy" side of the story, and not just straight women who can identify with the "girl" side of the movie. The actions attempted, approaches utilized, reactions brought forth and responses formed are those familiar to anyone on the dating spectrum. If you haven't performed or been subjected to one of these scenarios, a friend of yours has.

Will Smith is Alex Hitchens, aka The Dating Doctor. Some women choose to believe he's an urban myth, but in reality he is a successful but very secretive consultant who helps men not defeat themselves during the first few dates with the woman of their dreams. The idea is that after three dates, the women are less likely to read offense into actions or statements of the men, so the men can be themselves without self-termination by misunderstanding. After that, they're on their own.

Of course there has to be a wrench in Hitch's well-planned life, and it comes in the form of Eva Mendes as Sara, a jaded-on-love gossip columnist for whom Hitch falls - hard. Then there's his client Albert (Kevin James), a mild-mannered and rather goofy accountant who is convinced that his firm's fabulously wealthy celebrity client Allegra (Amber Valletta) is his soulmate. Allegra's celebrity puts her in the zoom lens of Sara, and hijinx ensue.

But the hijinx are well-written, well-acted, and include a number of well-placed Big Chase Scenes. My face was actually sore by the closing credits, from smiling for so long.

A classmate of mine recommended Hitch as fun for a matinee, but not worth full price. I disagree, and give this one a full price recommendation. But go to a matinee anyway, because it's not like you really get anything extra for paying full price, except less money in your wallet and more crowds with which to contend. But you get the idea.

Reality Check: The Girl loved it too. Plus, Hitch includes a couple of references to Jerry McGuire (one of her all time favorite movies), including a clip, which solidified a winning review.

Posted by Beth Henderson at 3:43 PM