Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Penny Thoughts ‘12—This Means War (2012) **

PG-13, 97 min.
Director: McG
Writers: Timothy Dowling, Simon Kinberg, Marcus Gautesen
Starring: Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine, Tom Hardy, Chelsea Handler, Til Schweiger, John Paul Ruttan, Abigail Leigh Spencer, Angela Bassett, Rosemary Harris 

Today is my 13th wedding anniversary with the most wonderful woman on Earth. My wife is a fan of movies like “This Means War”. I don’t mind them, despite the fact that as a critic I really can’t get behind them as quality entertainment. Every once and a while, it’s fun to turn your brain of for an evening and just watch silly things happening on the screen.

In many ways, “This Means Wars” has everything for a date night movie. It has hunky guys—the chiseled good looks (Chris Pine) and the rugged tough guy (Tom Hardy) —for the women. It has Reese Witherspoon for the men. It has big explosions, fast cars, lots of guns. It also has exquisite interior design, cute kids, a single dad, and a sassy sidekick (Chelsea Handler), who happens to be fairly good looking as well. It has comedy and action and nary a philosophical thought in sight.

Now, the reasons I can’t recommend it on the basis of art are just as obvious. It doesn’t really have any characters in it, just perfectly made up perfections of human specimens playing character descriptions. She’s a great businesswoman who can’t seem to figure out her love life. They are super gorgeous spies who look good in tuxes and don’t play by the rules. One guy is a Don Juan; the other guy is sensitive. Oh, and one’s “British”. I’m not as convinced as this movie is that this is a character definition and not just an accent indicating a geographical area of upbringing.

But, you know, if your looking for something that you can enjoy with your wife of 13 years snuggling next to you, you could do worse with some much better movies.

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