Now that my biggest point of contention is out of the way, let me get to a few others. As stated in the intro, Reynolds is an efficiency expert who, in an obsessive compulsive way, has to make lists of what he’s doing, what he’s going to do and how he’s going to do it. The people I know in my life who suffer from OCD are not constantly drinking; they’re busy dealing with their affliction almost to the point of isolation. That may be a minor thing for the story and a little too close to home personally but it bugged me. The way the flick starts out, Ryan Reynolds’ character is having a chat with the young man who’s going to marry his daughter. With what little make up Reynolds had on, I wasn’t buying that he was a father about to give his daughter away. Through this chat, Reynolds sets up a good ol’ flashback that takes us to a New Years party where he and his wife fall in love. Fantastic. Then you fast forward a few years and they have a kid and his wife fucks up his schedule making him late to a lecture and then he gets accosted by a hot young blonde, but he’s nice guy so he doesn’t want to bang her and while they’re in the hotel room his wife calls and she’s hears the girl laughing and his wife gets pissed and…….ugh.
We’ve seen this story before but told in a much better fashion and above all, in an R rating setting. With what goes on in this story from infidelity to fist fights to questions of paternity, I refuse to believe that not one of these people ever swore. Sorry, I just can’t buy it. The dialogue and delivery felt real familiar, like the time I accidentally walked in on my ex-ladyfriend watching the Gilmore Girls or one of those “let’s be edgy by saying ‘butt’” shows on the CW. The one thing I liked about the movie though, were the performances by Reynolds, Stuart Townsend and especially Emily Mortimer. The actors had little to work with, in my opinion, when it came to the dialogue but each made me believe in their respective characters’ emotions. There are also some nice shots of Vancouver though everyone seems dressed to be extras in Sex and the City.
Alternate Opening Scene: The guy who’s going to marry Reynolds’ daughter shows up at her hotel room for, as Alex in A Clockwork Orange called it “the ol’ in out/in out.” After some flirtatious dialogue she lets him in. I don’t know if that’s supposed to be an omen or what but it was cool to see.
Extended New Years Scene: The New Years scene is where it all happens for our main character. There he finds love and it also sets up the love triangle that drives the movie. The extra stuff we see here is the “morning after” where Reynolds and his future wife frolic out in the snow with sheets on.
Alternate Ending: This isn’t so much an alternate ending as it’s a brief extension of it. There’s a visual shot early in the New Years scene that is brought back here. I actually liked this better than the one used in final cut of the movie.