5 May 2010
THE BACK UP PLAN:
Releases May 7th 2010
Jennifer Lopez plays Zoe - a corporate employee-turned-pet store owner who decides to become a single mom, courtesy of a sperm donor.
The decision was made because she hadn't met "Mr Right" and felt time was running out…
Irony has to play a part and so as soon as she leaves the doctor's office with confirmation of her future parenthood, she meets up with Stan (Alex O'Loughlin) when he gets into the same taxi as her. Any suspicions of romance are confirmed when we learn that Stan mans a stand at a farmer's market, hawking the goat cheese he makes on his own farm.
Things progress romantically and eventually Zoe has to reveal her pregnancy. However, once Stan digests the information, he agrees to stay with her.
In Stan's moony eyes, Zoe is the cutest, sexiest creature on the planet (except when she has chicken in her hair). Obviously, they were meant to be. After about four dates he's ready to affectionately endure pregnancy symptoms (vomiting, sloppy eating) that seem to manifest mere days after her insemination.
Zoe and Stan have troubles, but they're kooky rom-com mishaps and endearing difficulties that are easily resolved. The reality of sudden parenthood is simply fodder for the-horrors-of-parenting-and-childbirth humour, which ranges from turd surprises to the gleeful "guess what childbirth does to your bladder" warnings of Zoe's friend Mona (Michaela Watkins).
Along with Maribeth Monroe's hilariously horrifying birthing wail, Watkins offers rare comic relief; otherwise the movie resorts to misinterpretations of "bought the farm" and unsettling overexposure that includes pubic hair reflections and a glimpse of Lopez's bare booty (the moment fans have been waiting for?), all the while exploiting the lovability of Nutsy, Tom Bosley of Happy Days, and Linda Lavin of Alice, who plays Zoe's Nana, and who Zoe assures that Stan is "special, real, funny and different."
Alas, The Back-Up Plan is everything you expect from a bad rom-com: a warped sense of relationship reality, a contrived tale about how life doesn't go according to plan, and worse. And it's all served up with a cloying cuteness that's enough to cause an audience to do exactly as Zoe does at the film's finale: throw up.
But for those under the age of 25 who have yet to experience the repetitive tales of pregnancy, childbirth and what it does to you physically, there may be some interest to keep you on your seat. For the rest of us, we have heard it all before…
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