I read this book a couple years ago and was happily surprised to hear they had turned it in to a movie. Here’s the storyline straight from IMDB:
“Friendships are tested and secrets come to the surface when terminally single Rachel falls for Dex, her best friend Darcy's fiancé.”
If you haven’t read the book yet this little blurb will have you on Darcy’s side before you even walk in to the theater. You will quickly change your mind soon after the movie begins. Unless you are a Darcy. Then you won’t understand it at all. I’m just saying. We very quickly discover that the world revolves around Darcy and that Rachel and well, pretty much everyone else, are just tiny little planets basking in her glory. Wow! That sounded mean. Even to me. But I’m sticking by it.
I loved the scenery throughout the movie. Loved loved loved Rachel’s apartment. She must be a pretty good lawyer to have a space that big. No, it’s not huge but it’s not teensy either. Hated Darcy’s apartment. It was an homage to Darcy. Blech! Love the house in the Hamptons. Actually, the things I loved most about it were the porch and the beach. Gorgeous! One of my favorite lines in the movie mentioned the Hamptons being “A zombie movie directed by Ralph Lauren.” Ha! And New York was apparently thoroughly scrubbed down before filming because there was only prettiness to be seen. And there was a burger stand that was heavily endorsed in the film. It’s called the Shake Shack and I think I had previously heard about it on the Food Network. Kudos to you for the major publicity. I swear the movie had nothing to do with my wanting to go there when I visit New York.
This movie hit close to home because a few of the characters were so much like people I know. Let’s begin with Rachel. Actually, I know several Rachels. Ginnifer Goodwin did an excellent job as Rachel. She is almost exactly what I pictured from the book. She is the fresh-faced good girl counter-acting Darcy’s sometimes haggard looking (yes, I said it) party girl. Rachel is the best friend, foil, bearer of burdens, etc. for Darcy. She knows Darcy so well that all the bad stuff is not noticed – for the most part – because she knows about the good too. She seems to have always easily pushed aside any negatives and enjoyed the positives. Yes, most people would consider her and people like her to be a doormat. Sad, but true. If this turns you off going to see this film then think again. I promise it gets better. At one point in the movie she says, “I want to be someone’s first choice.” You said it, sister! And on a side note. I want Ginnifer Goodwin’s hands. Not in a box or anything. Let me rephrase. I would like to have hands like Ginnifer Goodwin. So pretty.
I most definitely know a Darcy. I am actually related to a Darcy. She is not in my immediate family so Armat, you shouldn’t be offended. Her narcissistic tendencies are screamed at you through the entire film. Darcy must be the center of attention. At. All. Times. Even if it’s one on one time with a friend or fiance’. If someone pays attention to anyone other than her she fights to gain control. The movie opens on a surprise party that Darcy has thrown for Rachel but which is quickly turned in to a Darcy Fest. By Darcy. And she big time schmoozes those she considers “the better people”. Rachel does have Darcy’s “attention” part of the time. Until someone else shows up. I did really enjoy the Darcy/Rachel slumber party scene. It’s about the only time in the movie we get to see them as equals. Sorta. And young Armat would LOVE the quilt in this scene. Kate Hudson did a great job as Darcy but if I were a guy…and I’m not…I would definitely pick Ginnifer’s Rachel over Kate’s Darcy.
Omigosh this is becoming a very long review and I’m only a few characters in to it. I’ll try to make the rest short.
Colin Egglesfield plays the part of Dex, Darcy’s fiance’. He’s awful cute (and has beautiful eyes) but he’s so stinkin’ wishy washy you just want to smack him. Especially when he starts to cry and you just know what he’s about to say. Smack smack smack! Despite that, Darcy did NOT deserve him. On occasion we saw the Dex we were rooting for and even more so when he grew a back bone. When he said, “You are home for me.” I didn’t want to smack him so much.
John Krasinksi plays the part of Ethan, Rachel’s male friend. I would say he was Rachel’s other best friend but Darcy would never have allowed it. In fact, Darcy is down-right hateful to Ethan and I have a feeling the main reason for it is that Rachel likes both Darcy and Ethan and that just shouldn’t be done. I want to marry Ethan. He is Rachel’s confidante but also, to some extent, her defender. He does eventually reach his limit and, even though I wouldn’t want his ire aimed at me, I liked him all the more for it. And he knows how to say, “I’m sorry.” Boys…take note.
There are two main supporting characters in this film. Does that even make sense? One I loved and want to see in many many other movies. One I wouldn’t mind never seeing again. Ashley Williams plays the part of Claire. She is head over heels for Ethan and shows it in very odd ways. She is the comedy part of this Rom-Com. Ultimately her craziness is the catalyst for Rachel bucking up. I love love love Claire. I would be Claire if I weren’t such a shy baby. I’ve had the feelings but never acted on them the way she does. She definitely needs to be in more Rom-Coms.
The second “character” is Steve Howey. I knew I recognized him but couldn’t remember from where. He played the son-in-law on the TV show Reba. I liked him way better on TV. Steve plays the part of Marcus. I have most assuredly known a Marcus. And the Marcus I know…we’ll call him J…probably wouldn’t see himself as a Marcus. Go figure. Anywho, Marcus thinks he’s a ladies man. He’s rude, lude and socially unacceptable. And the ladies…they do NOT love him. He’s so immature you want to throw him in day care so the kids there might teach him how to grow up. For now I never ever never want to see him in another movie. Unless he plays a more mature, sane person. Then I might give him a chance. It’s not you, Steve. It’s the character. I promise. I hope. I felt the same way about Christian Bale in The Fighter.
Now for the extras. Cussing. There was a little and Kate did drop the F-bomb. I’ve decided she must have that written in to all her movie contracts. “Kate must be allowed to be profane in at least one scene”. Sex. Yes, there is sex, or rather, implied sex. You see them head there and you see them after but you don’t see the “during”. HOWEVER…you do get to hear Darcy having sex. For longer than necessary. Nudity. Not really but only thanks to a well-placed blanket. And since the character was moving so quickly I did look to see if maybe there wasn’t a quick peek somewhere. There didn’t seem to be. Drinking and drugs. Lots of drinking and at one point Marcus pulls out a joint. Violence. None. Unless you count my stomach’s reaction to Marcus.
This is going to sound funny after all the character bashing but I really did like this movie and will watch it again. Just never when I’m in the middle of a mood swing. That won’t be pretty for anyone. I definitely do NOT recommend this for children. I wouldn’t even recommend it for P.T. or “kids” her age. As I said before, I read and liked the book and the movie certainly did it justice. Only a few things were left out and they were minor. It ended the way the book did so I was happy about that. If you’re in to Romantic Comedies I would recommend this movie. If you’re not then I wouldn’t.
P.S. Stay through the beginning of the credits. There’s no reason to stay through them all because the only thing you see happens halfway through.
P.P.S. Real people do NOT wake up beautiful in the morning after what we’re assuming was a very good night. And, considering how much they’d been drinking, they definitely cannot safely talk face to face without cringing from monster morning breath. Not in my world anyway.