Review: The Ugly Truth


Director:Robert Luketic

Cast:Katherine Heigl, Gerard Butler, Bree Turner, Eric Winter

Running Time:96 Minutes


Sacramento news producer Abby Richter is a hopeless romantic"¦ Too bad it hasn't helped her love life. Abby always seems to find herself hopelessly single, until she meets Mike Chadway. Chadway, a male chauvinist and content bachelor, has his own public access show that tells it like it is when it comes to relationships. Mike is hired by Abby's studio in order to help ratings with his in your face (and sometimes inappropriate) style of relationship coaching. He offers to help Abby find love if she obeys all of his rules, and promises that if he is unsuccessful he will leave the show. This is where the movie really takes off"¦.

Repeatedly during the film I found myself doubled over from laughing at all of the ridiculous situations that occur. Even though I was in a theatre primarily filled with other women, the guys present were laughing just as hard. There is truly something in this movie that will appeal to anyone and everyone who has ever dated or been in a relationship"¦ the film may even help you laugh about the times when your efforts didn't work out so well. Although some of the comedic situations may have been a little far fetched in some scenes, it does not detract from how truly entertaining the overall film is. There is a particularly funny scene involving a business dinner gone wrong which had the entire theatre roaring!

I know you're probably asking yourself at this point: why, if this movie were indeed genuinely hilarious, would it have not received a top grade? Simple answer: It could have been better.

I wish the director, or anyone else that may be to blame, would have realized that even if you happen to be marketing a movie to a primarily female audience, cheap thrills are not appealing. I personally do not need to see a male actor's firm bum or six pack in order to feel like I got my money's worth out of a film. Maybe I stand alone, but in this particular film I felt like the shirtless cameo was ill placed, and ultimately distracts from a pretty heart-felt and pivotal scene in the movie.

Another complaint is that Katherine Heigl, known for her skills as an extremely talented actress, totally over-acted in this role. Throughout the movie, I kept wondering why in some scenes she was natural and relaxed while in others she was so over the top.. It was almost as if she just couldn't decide where she wanted the character's personality to go: sometimes she was an up-tight control freak producer who is all about business, and at other times she acted like a 13 year-old junior high school girl on the pep-squad. Maybe this was intentional, but it certainly didn't translate on screen as well as it could have. It ended up getting in the way of the underlying message of the film, which, at its center, was very honest and real.

My one last rant deals with a particular scene towards the end where Abby and Mike realize that there may be a romantic connection between them. You start to see the scene take a turn toward awkward as Mike leads Abby out onto a club dance floor and then see it all go wrong as they start to dance to a spicy salsa number. The dancing itself was a dumb addition, but the length of the scene was what made it truly painful. I can only guess that once again someone during production thought, "I know! Women love dancing"¦ Especially sexy dancing to Latin rhythms!" Wrong. It is not always cool to dance in romantic comedies.

Despite the fact that the film has a few issues, overall it was very funny and smart. It may appear to be a "chick-flick," but after your male friend/husband/ boyfriend has been dragged to the movie whining, he will exit the theatre still chuckling about what he has just seen. What makes this movie so enjoyable is that it isn't just another sappy romance film, but instead takes a moment to make us laugh at some legitimate issues surrounding relationships. The film definitely wasn't meant to be deep, but it certainly points out that when two people come together, the truth really isn't always pretty.


About Stephen Davis

Stephen Davis
I owe this hobby/career to the one and only Stephanie Peterman who, while interning at Fox, told me that I had too many opinions and irrelevant information to keep it all bottled up inside. I survived my first rated R film, Alive, at the ripe age of 8, it took me months to grasp the fact that Julia Roberts actually died at the end of Steel Magnolias, and I might be the only person alive who actually enjoyed Sorority Row…for its comedic value of course. While my friends can drink you under the table, I can outwatch you when it comes iconic, yet horrid 80s films like Adventures in Babysitting and Troop Beverly Hills. I have no shame when it comes to what I like, and if you have a problem with that, then we’ll settle it on the racquetball court. I see too many movies to actually win any film trivia contest, so don’t waste your first pick on me. My friends rent movies from my bookcase shelves, and one day I do plan to start charging. I long to live in LA, where my movie obsession will actually help me fit in, but for now I am content with my home in Austin. I prefer indies to blockbusters, Longhorns to Sooners and Halloween to Friday the 13th. I miss the classics, as well as John Ritter, and I hope to one day sit down and interview the amazing Kate Winslet.

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