Reviewed by: Nadine Smithson
CONTRIBUTOR—first time reviewer
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|Featuring:||Pierce Brosnan … Richard Haig
Salma Hayek … Olivia
Jessica Alba … Kate
Malcolm McDowell … Gordon
|Director:||Tom Vaughan—“What Happens in Vegas” (2008), “Extraordinary Measures” (2010)|
a pathetic excuse for a romantic comedy
In this film, college professor Richard Haig (Pierce Brosnan) gets his former student Kate (Jessica Alba) pregnant and then marries her. It’s soon clear that Brosnan’s character is an unapologetic hedonist. Without giving too much away, he meets Kate’s sister Olivia (Salma Hayek), and they immediately flirt with each other. They fall in “love.” As a Christian, I know what love is, and this film doesn’t portray that. It portrays someone moving from one lustful relationship to another. This movie shows the betrayal and heartache of all 3 characters as they lie, go behind each others backs, and fall into lust.
This film also promotes the goal of simply being a “good person” and “following your heart,” which is something that the Bible criticizes (Ephesians 2:8-9—we cannot boast of our own works / Jeremiah 17:9—the heart is deceitful).
Half an hour into the movie there’s another visible sex scene. It becomes apparent that Brosnan’s character (an English man) married his student Kate so he could stay in America. He used her, and the writers seem to just throw so-called comedy over it to make everything seem fine. As a hardcore Christian, strong in my faith with the Lord, the word “vile” entered my mind while watching this movie.
As the story unfolds, it becomes clear that just having a good job in a decent workforce is not going to cut it for Richard. This film depicts the lives of people who are lost, not truly happy, playing games with each other and are just sinning their way through life. The characters don’t care about God and have no thought for any Godly morality.
As the film goes on, Kate (Jessica Alba) gets bored with her older man (husband Richard), and dumps him—not suprising since dating one’s young college student is generally a bad idea. This movie is labeled a romantic comedy, but there is no true romance, just lust, and there is no comedy. The scenes that are supposed to be funny are heinously sexual and worldly. There is a particularly extreme sex scene which is very uncomfortable to watch.
The portrayal of Los Angeles is misleading, with all the skinny so-called attractive young women on the beach, when the truth about LA is that it actually has an obesity problem, and people on beaches are usually families, not skinny, half-naked women.
There is not much violence. Brosnan’s character gets hit with a ball by accident.
The film’s language is disgusting from the very beginning. Richard is explaining to his child a specific time when he was once a child. Immediately, he swears, saying the f-word. There’s offensive language throughout the movie. I didn’t keep track of all the swear/curse words, but they include f**k, f***ed up, c**k, b***r off, and more.
There’s a scene where the child of Richard (Brosnan) and Kate (Alba), gets into trouble at school, and Richard goes to the school and finds out the boy used the f-word. This shows the consequences of what people say to, and in front of, their children. However one trains a child, that is what they learn (Proverbs 22:6).
There are very few positives I can report. The main three characters are outwardly likable. The only scene that I found to be heartwarming was the way Brosnan’s character calmed his child when the child was having a panic attack. It showed the love of a father for his child, just how God loves us and wants to comfort us when we’re in distress (2 Corinthians 1:4).
This movie is all over the place; the writers don’t seem to know whether their film is a comedy, romance, or drama; it’s neither three of those. It’s just a mess—with swearing, sex scenes, arguing, lust, heartache, unhappiness, and tasteless comedy. In my opinion, this is not a movie that a Christian should watch, especially anyone that has been battling sexual sins. This film promotes sex before marriage and casual sex as no big deal. 2 Corinthians 12:21 states that sex before marriage is clearly a sin. This movie shows no remorse for that. No one seeks God. They look to each other to fulfill their needs.
This film disguises sin as comedy. But, however you make sin look, sin is still sin (Romans 3:23. In one scene, where Brosnan’s character is giving his students advice, he says “stick it to the man,” it’s presumed he is talking about God. How much more blasphemous can this film get?! Don’t waste your time watching this movie.
Violence: Minor / Profanity: Extreme / Sex/Nudity: Extreme
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.