Exception to the Rule
He’s Just Not That Into You, directed by Ken Kwapi, tells the story of a group of people — all connected in some way — looking for their own perfect romantic commitment. The majority of them have the same problem: they look for love in all the wrong places. The movie has a cast of A-list actors and keeps you laughing, but it does have some directional problems. This does not, however, take away from the fact that it still offers compelling and completely honest insight on the female desire to have everlasting love and commitment.
Kwapi’s film is based on a popular advice book of the same title written by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo. This self-help book was inspired by the hit television series Sex in the City. Though [He’s Just Not That Into You has some of the same qualities and situations that were seen on Sex in the City, the movie certainly holds its own.
The film begins with narrator Gigi (Ginnifer Goodwin), an emotional wreck who yearns to find love, on a first date with Conor (Kevin Connolly), a cute real estate agent. From Gigi’s perspective, the date seems to go pretty well, so Gigi spends the next week waiting for her phone to ring, but it never does.
Conor might not call Gigi, but he does call Anna (Scarlett Johansson), an aspiring singer who works as a yoga instructor. But things don’t end there: The thread of relationships gets more tangled as the other characters are introduced, and it is interesting to see how everything plays out. Obviously, all of these relationships have the potential of becoming quite confusing and overwhelming, but the screenwriter does a successful job of making each character incredibly distinguishable. Each possesses his or her own personality, but they also seem very realistic. These qualities create a significantly more relatable story, and allows the audience to identify with at least one of the characters.
As the film proceeds, a desperate and impatient Gigi impulsively goes to a bar that she knows Conor frequents, but he isn’t there. She meets Alex (Justin Long) instead, who is both Conor’s friend and the blatantly honest bar owner who provides insight into the male psyche.
The friendship between Gigi and Alex ultimately becomes one of the main driving forces of the plot. As this is happening, all of the other characters deal with relationship issues of their own. There are moments in He’s Just Not That Into You that seem completely unnecessary. For example, toward the middle of the film, the audience is introduced to Beth’s (Jennifer Aniston) father (Kris Kristofferson), who seems to have been placed in the film to provide a quick way to get to the point.
Unfortunately, this diversion breaks up the plot instead of moving it along. Also, every 30 minutes or so, the film awkwardly becomes a documentary. There are random people who begin to talk about a relationship issue in the film. Though these moments are funny, they are not really necessary to the forward movement of the film.
Although this movie does have its glitches, they don’t cause it to lose its flare. The characters have one main goal: to be someone’s exception to the rule. Leaving the theater, you might not remember all of the rules, but you will recall one: If a guy doesn’t call you or doesn’t ask you out, it means that he’s just not that into you.