August 11, 2011

Movie Review: Friends With Benefits

Cute movie, some funny lines, some stupidity. Nothing all that new, but all in all, not a bad way to spend two hours in air-conditioned comfort when it's 150 degrees outside.
It's that ever-popular theme of sex without attachment. Don't we love exploring that concept? There are lots of movies about it these days, some better than others, but don't they always turn out the same? No matter. If it's done well we can still enjoy it and this is done pretty well.
If you've ever seen Justin Timberlake on Saturday Night Live you know how funny he is - he can do anything, play any part, and he's so unselfconscious about it. I really love that about him. And I've liked him in most of his films. He's cute in this but there are times he seems not quite comfortable in this part.
Mila Kunis is very appealing on screen (they're cute together) and altho the part's written a little too glib for me she's fun to watch.
The flash mob scenes don't work and the magician kid is pointless but you have to have some gimmicks, I guess. It's a good cast but Jenna Elfman is wasted here (although she looks great), Woody Harrelson is a caricature and Patricia Clarkson is a reprise of her role on Six Feet Under (but with dark hair), but the best supporting role is from the reliable Richard Jenkins, a brilliant actor with the world's most expressive face. If you haven't seen The Visitor rent it now. It's my favorite performance of his and a great film.
Back to the concept of Friends With Benefits, I was watching a Sex and the City Episode the other day and Carrie says, "According to certain scientists, when a woman has sex her body produces a chemical that causes her to emotionally attach. This chemical may account for the series of questions that involuntarily pop into our minds. Like,
1. Does he like me?
2. Will he call again?
3. Where is this going?
Do you think sex without attachment is possible? Does it ever work for anyone?
Three stars out of five for Friends With Benefits

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