Failure to Launch

Such was the lack of movie options on the way home, I was stuck with this one.
I am not a drooler over Matthew McConaughey and nor am I a Carrie Bradshaw groupie, so Sarah Jessica Parker is not on my hot list of actresses. Not really a good start then.

The premise of the movie is that McConaughey is a 30-ish bachelor called Tripp who is still living at home with his parents, quite happily enjoying being waited on hand and foot by his mother. His two best friends are doing the same. Unfortunately for him, his parents really would like to have their home back to themselves. This leads them to Parker’s character Paula, who is a facilitator of removals. The storyline allows you to get to know the three bachelor boys, and there are quite a few funny scenes involving wildlife spaced throughout the movie.

True to romantic comedy formula, the cool and detached Paula starts to like her target. She tries to convince herself that she doesn’t, and that she is looking at him as a professional. Of course, things change when one of Tripp‘s friends sees Paula with another of her removal clients and she is forced to explain what she is doing. His silence is bought with an arranged date with Paula‘s flatmate Kit. Unfortunately while he is silent with regards to telling Tripp he still tells the other friend, who goes on to spill the beans. How this plays out is the fun bit of the film.

This is a good, solid, traditional romantic comedy. There a moments of laughter (usually provided by the appearance of wildlife), and cute moments between the characters. You feel for the parents, including the Mum’s fear of having her son move out and her husband back 100%. She wants her space back, but is worried that having been parents so long that they may not still love each other like they did pre-Tripp. Even though this has a good portion of the story told from Tripp‘s point of view, it is still essentially a chick-flick.

If you are a fan of either of the movie’s principals, you will enjoy this. McConaughey gets to be sweet and charming. Parker gets to be…well…not sure on that one actually. Normal might be a good description. A girl trying to deal with her life, finding out she’s not so good at keeping emotional distance between herself and a good man (despite his Failure to Launch).

It’s cute. It’s inoffensive. It’ll probably make you smile and you may even laugh a bit too. The idea of surfing with dolphins may never be the same again for you, though.

1.5 out of 5 (if you feel like a movie that challenges the romantic tradition)
2.5 out of 5 (if you feel like a hotwater bottle, duvet cover and hot chocolate – and it’s the middle of the day) 😉

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