EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|SWITCH, THE (directors: Allan Loeb/based on the short story “Baster,” by ; cinematographer: Jess Hall; editor: John Axelrad; music: Alex Wurman; cast: (Kassie), (Wally), (Roland), (Leonard), (Debbie), Thomas Robinson (Sebastian); Runtime: 101; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producers: Albert Berger/Ron Yerxa; Miramax Films/Mandate Pictures; 2010); screenwriters:|
pleasant as a daylight stroll across Central Park in the
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
It's adapted from Jeffrey Eugenides’s short
story "The Baster" that
appeared in The New Yorker in 1996. The formulaic sitcom, with an
ultra-cute premise, is directed by , and is
cleverly written by Allan Loeb. It's
all predictable, bland and harmless fun, but the good performances
count for much in making this lightweight piece as pleasant as a
daylight stroll across Central Park in the summer.
It's set in NYC among some
fortysomething yuppies. Successful single TV producer Kassie (Jennifer
Aniston) feels the biological clock ticking as she hits 40 and tells
her square, sweater-vest wearing, tongue-tied when it comes to romance,
Wall Street financial analyst, nice guy bachelor best friend, Wally
(Jason Bateman), of the last 6 years, that she wants a child through
artificial insemination and decided to put an ad in the paper for a
sperm donor. The neurotic sad sack Wally doesn't have the courage to
tell her how much he loves her, instead offers his seed. When rejected,
he unsuccessfully tries to dissuade her from going through with this
experiment. But the
strong-willed Kassie throws an insemination party, where a drunk and
stoned Wally meets the outgoing hunky Columbia University professor
married sperm donor Roland ().
Kassie gets pregnant, but is unaware that Wally switched Roland's semen
with his own.
Kassie moves back to her
hometown in Minnesota and raises Sebastian (Thomas Robinson), but returns to Manhattan in 2010, some 7
years later, with her smart, adorable, miserable and neurotic six year
old son, who inherited his secret dad's looks in addition to his
personality traits and like dad moans
when he eats. Again Wally becomes Kassie's best friend
and remains in the "friendship
zone," while a now divorced
Roland starts dating Kassie and raises Wally's jealousy level to new
Wally confides to his
business partner Leonard (Jeff Goldblum) how he's too insecure to tell
Kassie he loves her and about him being the tyke's dad, while Kassie
talks girl talk with her wisecracking best friend and makeup artist at
her workplace Debbie ()--in
an Eve Arden-like role.
Things resolve themselves sensibly as one would expect from such typical sitcom fare. Though the main characters in conflict seem real and are worth caring about, which helps us get through such a cutesy romcom story that might not be as plausible to others as it was to a more pacified me.
Jason Bateman also acts as narrator, as the story unfolds entirely from his POV.
REVIEWED ON 9/6/2010 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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