The Heartbreak Kid

The Heartbreak Kid


Reviewed by: Stephen Carty

When perma-batchelor and commitment-phobe Eddie Cantrow (Ben Stiller) meets the meets seemingly-ideal Lila (Malin Akerman), he decides to take the plunge and the pair get married after a mere six weeks. However, on their honeymoon it soon becomes clear to Eddie that they're actually far from suited as he hits it off with Miranda (Michelle Monaghan), who seems to be 'the one'...

Given the huge success of There's Something About Mary, you can't really blame the Farrelly Brothers for using the same formula again. We've got Ben Stiller in full put-upon, unlucky in love and life nice-guy mode. You've got the perfect girl with whom he shares chemistry as romance blossoms in sun-drenched settings. Then you've also got the secret that threatens to ruin said chemistry. However, while watchable enough, The Heartbreak Kid inevitably isn't a patch on the Farrelly's previous genital-zipping, semen-gelling classic.

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Based on the '72 Elaine May-directed, Neil Simon-scripted movie of the same name, there are a few good visual gags and some crude word play worth a giggle or two (most coming from Stiller's movie and real-life Dad Jerry). The problem is that, unlike when surprise-hit There's Something About Mary, ahem, came out of nowhere, the approach feels too familiar while the sweet romance isn't that sweet and the hilarious gags aren't that hilarious. On the plus side, there's a nice message (sort of) about getting to know someone before committing and a great David Bowie-themed soundtrack (including a nice moment accompanied by Ziggy Stardust).

Also, the cast can't really be faulted; Stiller does his thing, Monaghan is easy enough to fall in love with and Akerman handles every humiliating thing the script throws at her (the pubic hair/urination scene has to be seen to be believed) as well as can be expected. Sadly, the supporting faces - particularly Carlos Mencia's Uncle Tito - are nowhere near as funny as intended.

Passable (just) with a few laughs and a reasonably engaging love story, it's just that there isn't something about The Heartbreak Kid.

Reviewed on: 16 Jan 2010
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The Heartbreak Kid packshot
A newly married man meets the girl of his dreams.
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Read more The Heartbreak Kid reviews:

Jeff Robson ****

Director: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly

Writer: Scot Armstrong, Leslie Dixon

Starring: Ben Stiller, Michelle Monaghan, Jerry Stiller, Malin Akerman, Carlos Mencia, Rob Corddry

Year: 2007

Runtime: 100 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: US


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