Women have been programmed since a young age with the help of their mothers or friends to concoct a list of reasons, like he was sick or he was out of town, to explain why a guy didn’t call her back or ask her for a second date. When the real reason for a guy’s disappearance is quit easy to explain: he’s not interested. Finding the “perfect” mate is no easy task as seen in He’s Just Not That Into You directed by Ken Kwapis (The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants) and written by the Never Been Kissed team of Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein, who has a cameo in the movie as a bartender. He’s Just Not That Into You is based on a 2004 book with the same title written by comedian Greg Behrendt, who also has a cameo in the movie as a priest, and Liz Tuccillo. Publishers Weekly described the book as smart, funny, and upbeat, but unfortunately the movie is none of these things.
Set in Baltimore, the entire spectrum of relationships are covered. There are single people looking for love, a dating couple who are in love, and a married couple in danger of losing their love for each other. Gigi, played by Ginnifer Goodwin (Walk the Line),is a perky assistant in an ad company. She is desperately looking for her “Mr. Right”. The first man to call her for a second date will definitely win her heart. Alex (Justin Long, Live Free or Die Hard), is a bar manager that thinks he knows everything about dating. His “knowledge” may save him from getting a broken heart, but it also prevents him from finding true love. Conor (Kevin Connolly, TV’s Entourage) is a trendy real estate agent that shares a one-way attraction to Anna (Scarlett Johansson, The Spirit), a flirty aspiring singer. Mary (Drew Barrymore) is caught in the world of “techno-dating”. She relies on the Internet, text messaging, and voice mail among other techie gadgets to find her love match.
Neil (Ben Affleck) has been dating Beth (Jennifer Aniston) for seven years, but he’s failed to pop the question that all girls want to hear. Will you marry me? Beth is getting impatient waiting for Neil to ask, so she must decide is she wants to wait or end it. Ben (Bradley Copper, Yes Man) and Janine (Jennifer Connelly) were college sweethearts that may have gotten married too soon. Now, their marriage has lost its spark and is in danger of falling apart completely.
With so many characters and so many plot lines, you’d think something would be interesting about He’s Just Not That Into You, but the answer is no.Instead, the writing team of Silverstein and Khon produce a long, drawn out story that is tedious to watch with characters that are ho hum. I didn’t feel a connection to any of the characters or their story-lines.
The worst of the characters is Gigi, who is so irritating. To have to listen to her go on and on about if this guy likes me or will this guy call me is unbearable. I just wanted to yell at her, “Get a grip!!! No wonder guys run away from you. You are such a flake!” Ken Kwapis’s direction does nothing to improve the sluggish pace of this stale movie. The running time is 129 minutes. Way too long for this type of movie! I know there are a lot of characters and story-lines, but still shorten it up or cut out some characters and plot lines.
The one bright spot in this otherwise drab film is a funny back-and-forth conversation between Janine and her home-remolding contractor named Javier (Luis Guzman, War). Janine interrogates Javier about if the men on his crew have been smoking on the job. Janine is really against smoking since her father died of lung cancer. The dialogue is amusing and Javier’s reactions to Janine’s straightforward questions are laughable.
He’s Just Not That Into You may have been a good book, but I was just not that into the movie.