Serendipity review by Tom Blain

Seren-dip-shitty

All appologies for the comment above. I didn't mean to offend any of our faithfuls here at Jackass Critics , but it was to easy to twist those syllables around. Anyway, on with the review...

The film in question is a romantic comedy of fates called Serendipity. Jonathan (John Cusak) and Sara (Kate Beckinsdale) meet at a NY department store while shopping for their respective significant others' Christmas. They both go for the same pair of gloves and BOOM! the fates have spoken. They share a nights worth of moments together, chatting, ice-skating, giggling and flirting. Its all harmless fun that neither wants to see come to an end. So what do they do? Exchange phone numbers and get in touch next week? No, that would be to easy. One writes a phone number on five dollar bill which is given to a hot-dog vender. The other writes her name and phone number in book and sells it to a used book store.

Why do these star-crossed lovers create such obstacles for themselves? Because they are idiots. It won't take you long to figure out that Sara is nuts. She keeps saying "Well if fate meant it to be then this will happen." A more likely scenario is some 45 year old bald guy named "Bunny" will run across Jonanthon's five dollar bill in a back-alley dice game, and harass him at 3:42 am every Monday until he must ---comply---. Jonathan (in John Cusak's standard 30-something Holden Caufield) chases her around, doesn't rely comply with her idea of "lets leave it chanc", but what choice does he have? He is just a dopey guy.

Flash forward a few years later. Jonathon is engaged to a very beautiful woman, and Sara (who by the way is nuts AND a psychologist) is engaged to Yanni. Sara's life isn't bad, it seems that she has to juggle with her fiance's touring schedule but other than that, things look good. And Jonathon has it made. His wife-to-be is absolutely beautiful, and stable (much more than we can say for Sara). But it just wouldn't be John Cusak if he didnt go after the crazy ones. He constantly thinks about that wacko he met at Bloomingdale's and I just don't get it.

The movie isn't 100% terrible. It has a few moments supplied by his buddy Dean (Jeremy Piven) and the retail guy at Bloomingdale's (Eugene Levy) but they are pretty much the only two guys who pull this dead-weight. Piven is in his classic buddy, buddy, "I'll always buy you a beer" role but he is more hopped up than ever. He never misses a beat in this movie; too bad the rest of the movie can't keep up. Levy is neurotically funny as usual. He runs his counter by the book and to the point of the irritation of others. He nearly gets in a fist fight with Piven and Cusak which is something I wouldn't mind seeing. I almost turned the movie off after 30 minutes. Thank God I kept it on long enough to see their performances. It helped a little.

All in all, the whole premise of this movie becomes absurd. In romantic comedies its often the point of the main characters to "come together" by the end. Usually is extenuating circumstancs that keep them separated but in this case its their own stupid game of luck and chance. Why would I want to see them together after if they play a game to keep each other appart? Serves them right! And on top of that, they have to break off two marriages, one of which (Jonathon's) was for his own damn selfish reasons and to no fault of his gorgeous fiance. So in order for this story to work in the romantic comedy genre, we have to break of two marriages to get these two bozo people who had "one night of fun" together. I'm not buying it. The next time Cusak meets another honey-bunny in Bloomingdale's, will he follow her around NYC like a puppy dog too? Piven and Levy are good enough to pull this move up from a 2 to a 4... but its a shaky 4.




4 out of 10 Jackasses
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