The Back-up Plan

"OK"

The Back-up Plan Review


As far as romantic comedies go, this is just about watchable. Even though it's both silly and sappy, it has a vaguely realistic tone that lets us identify with the characters. Even if the romance falls flat, the romance is sweet.

Zoe (Lopez) is a busy but single New Yorker desperate to have a child, so she heads to the sperm bank. After her doctor (Klein) helps her conceive, even a clash with an annoying stranger, Stan (O'Loughlin), can't ruin her day. Of course, she runs into him again, and this time notices that he's both annoying and drop-dead gorgeous. So how will he react when he finds out that Zoe is pregnant?

Director Poul adds a slight edge to what's essentially a sunny rom-com. The unambitious script makes Zoe a pet store owner (cute puppy alert!) who attends a support group of single earth-mothers (nutty side character alert!), and everyone else is a standard comedy type, from snappy employees (Olsen and DeWulf) to wacky grandparents (Lavin and Bosley). But there's a nicely tentative quality to the dialog, which the cast underplays refreshingly. The slapstick and swoony romanticism are less convincing. As are the contrived conflicts that drive the plot.

The oddest thing about this film is its ordinariness. Both damaged by past relationships and personal grief, Zoe and Stan are normal people who find common ground and sparks of attraction in the usual ways. Of course, we know the genre rules will kick in. And it doesn't help that the film has that simplistic-artificial sheen in which people over-react to everything, have sex with their clothes on and get misty-eyed on cue. Although at least they actually talk to each other.

Since this is such a standard romantic comedy, the big worry is that screenwriter Angelo will wimp out with a lame late-act plot twist. Fortunately, she doesn't draw out the angst too long, and the surprises aren't too terribly forced. But for a film about the fears of commitment and impending parenthood, this is never more than charming and sentimental. It's a cute, undemanding romance but, besides watching the adorable Lopez and O'Loughlin, there's not much to it.



The Back-up Plan

Facts and Figures

Genre: Comedies

Run time: 106 mins

In Theaters: Friday 23rd April 2010

Box Office USA: $37.5M

Box Office Worldwide: $77.5M

Budget: $35M

Distributed by: CBS Films

Production compaines: Escape Artists, CBS Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 18%
Fresh: 26 Rotten: 115

IMDB: 5.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , Jason Blumenthal,

Starring: as Zoe, as Stan, Danneel Ackles as Olivia, as Clive, as Dad, as Daphne, as Babyland Salesgirl, as Carol, as Arthur, Maribeth Monroe as Lori, as Nana, as Mona


Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation Movie Review

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation Movie Review

Writer-director Christopher McQuarrie brings a dark and gritty tone to this larger-than-life franchise. Along with...

Beyond the Reach Movie Review

Beyond the Reach Movie Review

With a spectacular setting and two solid actors on-screen, this thriller builds enough solid suspense...

Cub Movie Review

Cub Movie Review

At a time when horror movies seem to only want to make the audience jump,...

Inside Out Movie Review

Inside Out Movie Review

Those bright sparks at Pixar have done it again, taking a fiercely original approach to...

Advertisement
Southpaw Movie Review

Southpaw Movie Review

Slick direction and meaty performances may be enough for some viewers, but this boxing drama's...

Eden Movie Review

Eden Movie Review

Loose and impressionistic, this beautifully shot film traces the career of a DJ who pioneered...

The Gallows Movie Review

The Gallows Movie Review

Without a single moment of originality, this found-footage horror movie really deserves to be the...

Self/Less Movie Review

Self/Less Movie Review

An intriguing premise keeps the audience gripped for about 20 minutes before the movie runs...

Advertisement