This Means War is a romantic comedy/action film directed by McG, best known for directing the Charlie’s Angels film series. The film stars Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine, Tom Hardy, and Chelsea Handler (who I NORMALLY DESPISE, but found she was tolerable in this movie). It also features Abigail Spencer, who I LOVE, especially in her role in Mad Men.
This film hasn’t gotten good reviews, but as far as romantic comedies go it was one of the most enjoyable that I have seen in years. It was very funny, and even delivered in the action department. Some people may initially think this is a chick flick, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Yes it has those elements at times, but trust me guys, if you want to have a night out at the movies with your “lady friend” this will not disappoint. You will be killing two birds with one stone.
The film has a very basic plot, but I feel that the spy aspect included in the film adds some originality. FDR (Chris Pine) and Tuck (Tom Hardy) are not only lifelong best friends but they also work together as CIA agents. We are also introduced to Lauren (Reese Witherspoon), who is a working professional that hasn’t had much time or luck in getting back into the dating world after a very nasty breakup. On top of that, she is constantly pressured by her best friend (Chelsea Handler) to do so. To make a long story short, with a little help from the world of online dating, Tuck (the single dad looking for love) starts dating Lauren. FDR, the playboy, picks up Lauren in a movie store and after being denied at first wants her even more. The best friends realize they are dating the same girl and decide to proceed in a way that will not affect their friendship. Even so, there is an unspoken understanding that the best man will win. While Lauren is struggling with whom to choose, both FDR and Tuck are battling it out with the help of their CIA training to win her over. I will let you all watch it to find out the rest…
I could be being biased because I love Chris Pine (aka Captain Kirk) and Tom Hardy (of Inception fame, and soon to be Bane in The Dark Knight Rises), but without them in the cast, I will be the first to admit I probably wouldn’t have been as interested in this movie, and would have probably just checked this out on blu-ray. However, since their combined star power was enough to make me see this film in theaters, I felt that they were the perfect combination (at least in my book) for these roles. Interestingly enough, Sam Worthington and Bradley Cooper were attached to star in this originally, but dropped out. This is a perfect example of why Pine and Hardy made the film for me because if it had starred Worthington and Cooper instead there would have been no chance that I would have seen this film. Seth Rogen also turned down the role (you can bet your bottom dollar though that I would have been in a seat if he was in this movie). As for Reese Witherspoon, while I think she is an awesome actress, I would have liked to have seen a less talented, hotter actress in this role. Maybe Blake Lively?
With all that being said I highly suggest you check this film out. If you are looking for a fun and entertaining night at the movies, then this film will give that to you. If you’re looking for a masterpiece, skip this and go see The Artist.
3 out of 5 StarsThis Means War (2012) 20th Century Fox R, 97 Minutes