No Strings Attached
I have come to terms that I seem to have reviewed more so-called “chick flicks” than almost everyone on this here blog. I guess being in a marriage under 2 years does that. Anyways…..onto the newest chick flick rom-com No Strings Attached.
No Strings Attached has a simple premise. Can two people have sex and not develop feelings for each other? Will it be the girl who succumbs to feelings? Will it be the guy? Both?
Ivan Reitman is at the helm here with his first directorial film in five years. As of late, he has just kept the producer’s hat on. For Reitman he does an average job in a genre he is not used to. Personally I felt he doesn’t use some of the side characters that well. In some scenes that feel forced or awkward but yet perfect in others.
Enough with the director, let’s talk Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher. Afterall, they are the stars of the film and the main draw that people are going to watch this movie for. The chemistry here between the two works. With Portman’s shy and disconnected approach with Kutcher’s party style demeanor, the two come together well and play off each well. Just as I wrote that line, I realize how that may come across with different meanings and I assure you my meaning wasn’t the one you think I meant being the nature of this film.
Portman does well here with slick one-liners and playing such a unaffectionate woman. Being this year’s Jude Law and starring in five films in under a year she fills her rom-com quota. Here she shows a totally different range of acting unlike previously seen in Black Swan and in 2009’s Brothers. I’m more reminded of her role in Garden State. Kutcher on the other hand, seems to be type-casted as Mr. Rom-com if you look at his credit of films in the last 8 years or so. By playing off his looks, he shows a little range in comparison to films like last year’s Valentine’s Day. Yes another chick-flick I reviewed here.
On the supporting role I liked two performances the best. Kevin Kline as Kutcher’s father, who basically stole many of the scenes he was in, and that of Mindy Kaling as Portman’s roommate. Kline shines here as a former television star who seeks companionship in woman half his age and at times woman who his son has been involved with. Kaling brings the same smart-ass demeanor she did in her brief role in 40 Year Old Virgin. While she wasn’t in many scenes, she made the ones she was present for count. On the other end of the spectrum, Cary Elwes has a brief role here that I thought was utterly pointless. In fact when he first was on-screen, I didn’t even recognize it was him.
Overall No Strings Attached is by no means a ground-breaking film or even a film that hasn’t had some variation done before. It is however a pleasant film that was better than what I expected and therefore give it a thumbs up.