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Love Happens
DVD disk
02.19.2010 By: Aaron the H
Love Happens order download
Director:
Brandon Camp

Actors:
Aaron Eckhart
Jennifer Aniston
Dan Fogler

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A self-help guru with a tortured past finds his life slowly start to disintegrate as his demons begin to get the best of him. Oh also, Jennifer Aniston is here to make it a love story.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
I originally started this review off with a few theories as to why this flick went straight-to-DVD. Then I did a wee bit of research and discovered that it was actually released in theaters. Thatís not a good sign. How did this movie slip past me? Especially with big-name talent like Jennifer Aniston and Aaron Eckhart. I have a few theoriesÖ

First off, the movie isnít very stupid or funny. So goodbye rom-com audience and good luck cutting a trailer since nobody here is getting a pie to the face or getting walked in on while in the shower. Secondly, the film isnít terribly romantic either- no making out in the rain to put on the poster and no bathroom full of rose petals (even though Aniston does play a florist). But the clincher here, the reason this film failed to get sufficient marketing and find a weepy female audienceÖis for the sheer fact that this is not Jennifer Anistonís movie- itís Aaron Eckhartís by a mile. Big no-no Hollywood; nobody likes an emotional male lead, except for a fair amount of dudes, none of whom would be caught dead at the local cineplex going to see a film called ďLove HappensĒ. Incidentally, not only is it the worst title Iíve ever heard, itís also the most misleading.

Because of the male-centric story, I found the film to be better than expected. Eckhart, in a surprisingly effective performance, plays a self-help guru who, in fact, is in need quite a bit of help (how ironic!). Dan Fogler (Balls of Fury) is great as his business manager and best friend. The filmmakers coulda taken the easy route and made Fogler the typical money-hungry agent whose greed overwhelms his morals, but alas, that wasnít the case here. Martin Sheen and John Carroll Lynch also give nice performances, but big problems arise with Aniston and the narrative.

Anistonís character, who is never really developed much, appears and disappears for large chunks of the story, and her and Eckhartís sappy conclusion feels very forced, as if the producers realized halfway through that they forgot to include that Hollywood fairytale romance ending. The story also seems thin at points and runs a bit long, as Eckhart seems to whine over and over again about the same problems. For a self-help guru, he sure doesnít know how to help himself, and after awhile, it just gets tiresome. Itís a shame, as this coulda been something special (yes, even despite the throw-up-in-your-mouth poster).
THE EXTRAS
Feature Commentary with director Brandon Camp, co-writer Mike Thompson, and Exec Producer Richard Solomon.

Deleted Scenes (13:15) - About 6 in total. Most deal with Jennifer Aniston's boyfriend in the film, who quickly and strangely disappeared early on. These scenes shed a lot more light on what happened. Man that actor must have been bummed to see all his scenes get cut.

Giving Romance a New Look (3:03) - Another misleading title here, this is, if you can believe it, a VFX montage that shows all the green-screen elements of the film before and after. Way to ruin the magic of romance for us folks. Looks like this crew never left the sound stage.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Until the final 60 seconds of this film (some of which appear in the trailer), love definitely does not happen anywhere in this flick. Instead, you get a poor man's Up in the Air, which ain't so bad. As a result, if your woman insists on renting a chick flick this weekend, dupe her with this puppy, as you could do far worse than settle for this.
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