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Friends with Kids
BLU-RAY disk
Aug 2, 2012 By: Mathew Plale
Friends with Kids order download
Director:
Jennifer Westfeldt

Actors:
Adam Scott
Jennifer Westfeldt
Jon Hamm

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Two single best friends (Scott, Westfeldt) decide to have a baby and stay single, so as to avoid the misery that burdens their married friends with kids.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Those with kids cancel their plans or just don’t have time. They scream more. They get less sleep. They also e-mail photos of their kids’ first poops in the potty.

Close pals Jason (Adam Scott) and Julie (Jennifer Westfeldt) are single with no kids. One night, they--and it’s hard to say whose idea it was--decide to have a little one. Only then can they go on to the part where they meet the man/woman of their dreams. No traps, no killed romance.

Their friends--Missy (Kristen Wiig) and Ben (Jon Hamm), Leslie (Maya Rudolph) and Alex (Chris O’Dowd)--predict disaster for their “progressive” approach. It’s such a short-sighted plan, and it’s after the birth that things start to fall apart: Jason meets a sexy dancer (Megan Fox) and Julie gets attached to her longtime best friend. In other words, Jason gets the plan and Julie doesn’t. And then things get more complicated. Well, no kidding.

You’d think Westfeldt, who also wrote and directed Friends with Kids, would give her character better sight or a stronger backbone. She does meet a man (Ed Burns), but he seems more of a prop to get even with Jason than a potential love. If Jason knows Julie so well, wouldn’t he anticipate her sore behavior? The first third of Friends with Kids is sharp, with a lot of funny observations of both being a parent and knowing parents. But what follows is more than an hour of poor writing and a bitter main character.

But despite these problems, Friends with Kids is host to very human characters that have so much and yet so little figured out. The real draw of the movie isn’t the script or Jason and Julie’s dilemma. It’s the ensemble cast of Adam Scott, Jennifer Westfeldt (a better actor than writer), Kristen Wiig, Jon Hamm, Maya Rudolph, Chris O’Dowd, Megan Fox, and Ed Burns.
THE EXTRAS
Audio commentary with Jennifer Westfeldt, Jon Hamm and William Rexer: Writer/director Westfeldt, actor Hamm and director of photography Rexer join together for this track, which is easygoing and conversational. Several parts of the production are touched on between spurts on commenting on what’s happening onscreen. (Some of the other “friends,” such as Adam Scott, Kristen Wiig and Chris O’Dowd, would have been a good choice for a second commentary.)

Making Friends with Kids (8:10): This is a standard promotional piece, with interviews with the primary cast, on-set footage and clips.

Ad-Libs & Bloopers: This collection is divided into two parts: Fun with Actors (7:28) and Fun with Kids (4:26). Neither is all that amusing, but fans will get a bigger kick out of the former.

Scene 42: Anatomy of a Gag (5:06): The scene (where Jason and Julie tell Leslie and Alex their plan) runs with script pages along the bottom of the screen to show how they compare and contrast. Also included are various ad-libs from the actors.

MJ Rocks at Video Games (3:49): Known video game lover Megan Fox teaches Adam Scott how to keep up.

Deleted Scenes (8:17): There are eight here, which can be viewed separately or as a whole. They are: “Jason at Work - Original Version,” “Jason at Work Post-Baby - Original,” “There Are No Cabs in Brooklyn,” “Samantha Bee,” “Julie’s First Date: Pete,” “Kurt & Missy Cook Dinner,” “Moving to Brooklyn Montage,” and “Seasons Passing - Original.”
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
What keeps Friends with Kids a solid movie isn’t the writing, but the ensemble cast’s chemistry and grip on their characters--Scott, Westfeldt, Wiig, Hamm, Rudolph, O’Dowd, Fox, and Burns are all great together. Special features on this disc include an audio commentary (lacking most of the talent), deleted scenes and footage of Fox schooling Scott in video games.
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