Life As We Know It

Life As We Know It is far from perfect, but it’s still a good chick flick. Sure, I’m a little biased ‘cause I went to school with the movie’s writers (Ian Deitchman and Kristin Rusk Robinson), but rest assured, I would’ve kept my mouth shut (metaphorically speaking) if I thought it sucked!

For the most part the movie is entertaining, though the initial premise is sad. It’s about two single people who don’t particularly like each other becoming joint guardians to a one-year-old when the child’s parents are killed in a (thankfully, off-screen) car accident. Apparently, the parents had failed to alert their respective best friends, Holly (Katherine Heigl) and “Messer” (Josh Duhamel) that they would inherit the kid, together, along with the couple’s fancy suburban Atlanta house. Read: instant dysfunctional family.

At first, Holly and Messer struggle to keep their individual lives on course. He is a technical director for pro hockey broadcasts and a swinging singles kind of guy. She runs a successful bakery and had just come across the potential man of her dreams (a cute doctor named Sam, played by Josh Lucas) when her life was turned on its head.

Of course, the kid is adorable and Holly and Messer start bonding over the joys and pitfalls of parenthood. And that leads to more, ahem, bonding. But their predictable hook-up comes at a cost. The ‘turn’ in their relationship feels a bit forced and is fueled by marijuana-laced brownies in a scene that ultimately comes off more irresponsible than funny.

There is, however, a fair amount of sweet and funny to be found in this movie, thanks in part to some great scene-stealing moments by the supporting cast of friends and neighbors, as well as a quirky caseworker from social services and a charming young babysitter affectionately known as “the baby whisperer.” The audience of both men and women had plenty of genuine laugh-out-loud moments. Personally, I think there may be a bit of Katherine Heigl fatigue in the chick flick genre (I’d still like my money back for The Ugly Truth) but I do really like both Josh Duhamel and Josh Lucas. In fact, it’s hard to know which guy to root for in the end.

Bottom line: Life As We Know It is a fine choice for a chick flick outing, date night, or solo escape. Sure, there are lots of dramatic, intense, awards-buzz movies in theaters now or coming down the pike. But every once in a while, ya just want to see a good ol’ fashioned romantic dramedy, flaws and all. And that’s Life.

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