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The Other Woman

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Photo Courtesy of www.impawards.com

Photo Courtesy of www.impawards.com

 

There are tired movies. There are tired genres. Then there are tired movies in tired genres. The Other Woman falls into that last category, and there are few positives to take away from this film (even for diehard chick flick fans).

The Other Woman follows Carly (Cameron Diaz), a no-nonsense lawyer from New York who has fallen for a smart, sophisticated hunk by the name of Mark (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). Just as things are starting to get serious, she learns that Mark already has a wife, Kate (Leslie Mann). Carly tries to move on with her life but is constantly hounded by naïve and helpless Kate. Kate eventually enlists Carly and yet another mistress, Amber (Kate Upton), to aid in getting revenge against Mark. Naturally, antics and sisterhood ensue.

What hurts the most about this movie is that it is not that funny. There are many chick flicks that are not the paramount of cinematic experience, but at least they make you laugh. In The Other Woman, I can count on my fingers the number of times that I chuckled (and most of those scenes were early in the movie and already included in the trailer). As the movie wore on, the jokes lost their flavor and Leslie Mann’s voice became nearly unbearable. There were large sections of the movie where I didn’t even crack a smile.

And then there is the plot. Besides the fact that this is the recycled plot of another chick flick B-movie, John Tucker Must Die, it feels incredibly uneven. When the movie tries to get serious, it just feels bizarre. There is a pseudo-feminist theme running through it (if only because the girls “win”), but it is hard to pick out a defined message in this movie. The plot just feels scatterbrained to the highest degree. Even though this is a movie about getting revenge on cheating significant others, Carly’s misogynistic father is supposed to be likeable and a guru of relationship knowledge (maybe since he divorces all of his wives and breaks up with all of his girlfriends before he moves on to another?). The editing team seemed to have done just as poorly as the screenwriters. Several scenes (most notably a scene where all three protagonists sit on the beach in a cheesy “sisterhood” moment) could have easily been relegated to the deleted scenes on the DVD release.

The acting also left something to be desired. This movie is notable because it gave both Kate Upton and Nicki Minaj their first significant acting roles. They were not as bad as one might have expected (Minaj actually has her moments in the movie) but do not hold your breath for an Oscar for either woman. Cameron Diaz is probably the least funny protagonist in this movie and all of her lines feel incredibly forced. Leslie Mann is probably the funniest out of the protagonists, but as mentioned before, her voice and persona become increasingly grating as the movie progresses. Taylor Kinney plays a nice foil to the crazy women surrounding him, but he falls victim to being put in a silly romantic sub-plot by the director.

Besides the aforementioned occasional chuckle (and I want to stress how rare this is), there are only a few more positives. This movie has a fitting sound track and the women’s outfits are fashionable (at least my girlfriend says so), but do not expect much more beyond that.

The Other Woman is not worth the time and effort it takes to find the positives. Save your money and watch (or rewatch) a better chick flick like Mean Girls. 

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