A Lot Like Love


Directed by: Nigel Cole
Written by:Colin Patrick Lynch
Starring: Ashton Kutcher, Amanda Peet, Ali Larter, Gabrielle Mann, Jeremy Sisto, Kal Penn
Released: June 2, 2005
Grade: C

Last year, I have a huge wrap to the Richard Linklater film, Before Sunset.  Essentially, it was a film where two characters (Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke) talk for 90 minutes.  Some may find this boring but I was really taken by them.  Hawke and Delpy made a good couple and their conversations were fascinating and intelligent.

A Lot Like Love feels like the Hollywood equivalent.  Ashton Kutcher and Amanda Peet star as Oliver and Emily.  They met on an airplane seven years ago and have seen each other on and off since that time.  Their world has always been complicated though by friends, other lovers and work.  Everytime you think they’re going to live “happily ever after”, something comes along to upset the apple cart.

There’s a theory that every film has three acts – the opening, the body and the conclusion.  It felt to me that A Lot Like Love never got past the introduction.  So much time is spent getting to know these people and it left me bored and frustrated.  If Oliver and Emily were interesting characters, I might think differently (as I did with Before Sunset).  Unfortunately, every piece of dialogue uttered from their mouth was clichéd and contrived.  It wasn’t natural.

Romantic comedies aren’t my favourite genre so to justify my position on this film, I’ll point out that the mostly female audience looked as disinterested as I did.  I don’t remember a single laugh nor emotional response.  It’s a low point in the resume of director Nigel Cole as I enjoyed his previous two films, Calendar Girls and Saving Grace.

A Lot Like Love looks a lot like a film to pass over.