Tuesday, January 31, 2012

At the Movies: What's Your Number?

Although my expectations for What's Your Number? were pretty low, I still managed to be disappointed when the bf and I rented it last weekend.  The bf, on the other hand, had even lower expectations but said that it was better than he'd thought it'd be, generously adding that it "had its moments."

Maybe I'm just getting jaded.

Early in the movie Ally Darling (Anna Faris) gets fired from her marketing job, a gig about which, as we later discover, she was lukewarm, only to be confronted by a Marie Claire article on the bus ride home that proclaims she's slept with too many men (19) to land Mr. Right.  (I could digress into a diatribe about my love-hate relationship with women's magazines but will respectfully refrain, as this post already teeters on the precipice of sour).  Things go from the proverbial bad to worse as Ally is catapulted into her sister's bachelorette party, where she learns that she has indeed slept with more men than any of the other bridesmaids.  Thus disheartened, she jumps on the bar and vows that the next guy she sleeps with will be her future husband.  Fast forward to the next morning, which finds her in bed with her former boss, who's played by that ever-so-snarky antithesis of Mr. Right, Joel McHale.    

With nothing but time on her hands, unemployed Ally launches what can only be referred to as a full-fledged stalking mission in which she tries to track down each and every one of her ex-boyfriends to determine if there's one she may possibly have overlooked.  This in and of itself seemed bizarre to me, as I'm sure it did to the legions of women out there who want nothing more than to forever disappear from the purview of past loves.  Nevertheless, I willed myself to suspend disbelief so that I may better enjoy Ally and company's antics.  And by company I mean Colin (Chris Evans), Ally's hunky and often shirtless across-the-hall neighbor.  Even more promiscuous than Ally, Colin strikes the all-important balance between recklessness and safety.  He is, after all, the only person in Ally's life who thinks that she can turn her passion for sculpting quirky characters into a career.  (Yes, folks, this is yet another movie in which the heroine is a frustrated, unappreciated artist whose spirit is cruelly crushed beneath the thumb of corporate America.  Or whatever the much less serious version of that is in the flawed, albeit highly addictive rom com genre.)  Yet even Colin's understanding ways do little to mask the lack of chemistry between him and Ally.  Sure, I wasn't expecting Notebook-caliber fireworks.  But I needed something to convince me that these two crazy kids would make it past the one-month mark.    

All criticism aside, What's Your Number? is nuanced by some highlights (as so wisely credenced by the bf).  Andy Sandberg is hilarious as Ally's first lover, professional puppeteer Gerry Perry, and Faris's real-life husband Chris Pratt enjoys what may be the movie's funniest moment as the fat-suit-wearing Disgusting Donald.  Finally, David Annable of "Brothers and Sisters" fame makes an appearance as the one that got away (cue Katy Perry).  His character is one-dimensional and wooden, but I like David Annable, so I was willing to let that slide.  Just as my love for romantic comedies allowed the rest of this stuff to slide so I could enjoy a side of bubblegum with my chicken Caesar salad.     

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