Someone Like You Movie Review

Based on the Laura Zigman novel, Animal Husbandry, Someone Like You is a romantic comedy about a late night TV talent coordinator named Jane (Ashley Judd), whose luck in love is predictably bad. So predictable is her misfortune, in fact, that she has devised a pervasive theory on the subject, revolving around the notion that men are like cattle.

When she meets her show's new executive, Ray (Kinnear, You've Got Mail), however, her luck -- she thinks -- begins to change. But Ray, she discovers, is just a typical bull, looking to spread his seed in wider pastures. And it's not until he dumps her for his ex-girlfriend that she realizes the true depth of her plight. Jane, it seems, is an old cow. And Ray is looking for a new cow. This joke more or less carries the film, and -- though interesting at first -- it gets old after its twentieth or fiftieth appearance in the script.

Fortunately, though, the film's fresh, funny dialogue packs enough power to keep things interesting. And the wry, cynical performance of Hugh Jackman (X-Men) as the incorrigibly good-timing Eddie drops in just in time to prevent the entire film from degenerating into a ridiculously softball piece of fluff. These combine with quick, quirky editing to provide enough stimuli to keep most audiences alert for this sub two-hour picture.

Those needing a little more stimulation than that (men, mostly) should take heart in the fact that Ashley's underpants scene from the movie's trailer is served justly on the big screen. (Though anyone looking for world-class cheerleading sequences will be saddened to learn that Judd's jumping splits performance was ruined by her inability to keep both legs straight in midair. For the record, this didn't bother me a bit.)

Judd carries her role with a Meg Ryan-esque charm that should prove valuable in future productions, while Jackman proves he has all the qualities of a rugged, enviable leading man. The supporting cast is funny, and well placed, as well -- particularly Ellen Barkin as the host of the late night show.

Much to my surprise, Someone Like You made for a funny, enjoyable picture right up until its final moments, when it completely brained itself by falling into the usual rut of romantic comedy conclusions. With its richness of dialogue and editing, I was certain it might have overcome its genre to set some new precedent in romantic comedy cheese. But no.

In the end, this is still a warm, fuzzy picture with enough wit to satisfy most audiences in need of a laugh. Ladies: Go for the humor. Gents: Stay for the underpants.

Like her, not him, we mean.


Someone Like You Rating

" Good "

Rating: PG-13, 2001


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