Movies · Opinion · studenty_cork

Film Review: What to Expect When You’re Expecting

With a star studded cast depicting five different pregnancy situations What to Expect When You’re Expecting is exactly what you would expect.

Plenty of viewers will find something to enjoy but it’s not the laugh out loud comedy that fans may have hoped for.

A happy accident throws TV fitness guru Jules (Cameron Diaz) and dance show star Evan (Matthew Morrison) from their high-pressure celebrity schedule into a high demand pregnancy.

Baby-crazy author Wendy (Elizabeth Banks) gets a taste of her own advice when pregnancy hormones give her hell. Her husband, Gary (Ben Falcone), struggles not to be outdone by his competitive alpha-Dad (Dennis Quaid) who’s expecting twins with his trophy wife, Skyler (Brooklyn Decker).

After exhausting all other options, photographer Holly (Jennifer Lopez) is prepared to travel the world to adopt a child, but her husband Alex (Rodrigo Santoro) needs to attend a “dudes” support group, where fathers get to vent the truth.

Rival food truck chefs Rosie (Anna Kendrick) and Marco’s (Chace Crawford) one night stand leads to the question: what to do when your first child comes before your first date?

The different stories sometimes provides a jumbled viewing experience but does cast a wide net that should allow most viewers to connect with at least one of the various story arcs.

The number of characters that are juggled can be distracting (especially since some couples get more screen time than others) but a few of the core storylines are particularly unique – at least when you consider the countless times they have been played out in previous films.

There are plenty of heartfelt performances from actors and actresses who take ownership of where their respective characters fit into the larger picture – with especially solid efforts from Anna Kendrick, Rodrigo Santoro, Elizabeth Banks and Ben Falcone (not to take anything away from the rest of the cast).“The Dudes” played by Rob Huebel, Amir Talai, Chris Rock, and Thomas Lennon are hit or miss with their efforts in comedy and advice.

The movie provides good chuckles and heartfelt drama but it is hard to ignore a number of missed opportunities. There are an equal amount of familiar gags and flat storylines.

Movie lovers and would-be parents who decide to check the film out aren’t likely to be blown away, but for those looking for a safe and familiar comedy-drama, What to Expect When You’re Expecting is perfect.

(original text published in on 3 June 2012


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