Friday, July 14, 2017

Movie Review: "Stuck In Love" (2012)

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Movie"Stuck in Love"
Director: Josh Boone
Year: 2012
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 37 minutes

A year in the life of an acclaimed writer named Bill, his ex-wife Erica, and their kids Samantha and Rusty, showing their struggles with love and relationships. 

Alternate title: "Rich White People Problems: The Movie"!

"Stuck in Love" tells the story of a divorced couple and their kids. Greg Kinnear plays Bill, who is a divorcee who can't get over his divorce. His ex-wife Erica, played by Jennifer Connelly, cheated on him, divorced him, and is now remarried, but Bill still has hope she will eventually come back to him. Because of their divorce and her affair, their daughter Samantha, played by Lily Collins, hates her mother and won't even speak to her. This has also led Samantha to be jaded about love, so she leads a very promiscuous lifestyle, sleeping with many different random guys without a moment's hesitation in order to avoid real relationships at all cost. Her brother Rusty, played by Nat Wolff, is very much the opposite and is much more of a romantic. He only has eyes for one girl in particular, a popular girl from his school named Kate, played by Liana Liberato, though Kate has a boyfriend and a bad cocaine habit. Bill, meanwhile, is a successful, well-renowned writer. He pays his children to write in their journals so they can become writers just like him, and now, Samantha has just had her first book published, though it's not the book Bill wanted to her to write. Bill spends his days having sex with the married woman who jogs by his house every day, a woman named Kate, played by Kristen Bell. Bill also spends his nights spying on his ex-wife and her new husband from outside their windows. What a clusterfuck of a family.

Throughout "Stuck in Love," it seems like writer/director Josh Boone actually wants the audience to root for Bill and Erica to get back together, though we would rather see Bill move on with his life because his desperation reeks from a mile away. This movie gives the message that it's okay to keep trying and trying and trying, no matter how many times you've been rejected and discarded like trash. Is that a good message? We certainly don't think so. Instead of taking the opportunity to craft an insightful piece about moving on after infidelity for both a father and his children, the film is a rather slow, formulaic, unrelatable mess. The script goes from a manic high to a depressing low in one fell swoop, making most of the characters seem like they are on drugs rather than grieving from their inner pain and angst. Though Kinnear and Connelly give good performances, it's hard to get past its cliche, overly dramatic feel in order for us to find a bigger, more meaningful message. In the end, it's really a tale about a bunch of rich white people whining about their problems. Take a Xanax already, people, we know you're already addicted to them.

My Rating: 4.5/10
BigJ's Rating: 4/10
IMDB's Rating: 7.3/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 59%
Do we recommend this movie: No.

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