“He’s Just Not That Into You” (Warner Brothers)

Six Degrees of Separation

“He’s Just Not That Into You” is a movie based on the book by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo. They got their title from a phrase used on the TV series “Sex and the City.” It is a catchy gathering of words and sets up the entire premise for the movie. It starts with one couple on a first date and then spreads attention to friends of these two who have friends in common with others who lead back to the first couple. Sounds complicated but it’s not. It’s just a lot of fun.

The first couple we meet is Gigi (Gennifer Goodwin) and Conor (Kevin Connolly). They are on a first date and seem to be hitting it off. Then the evening ends and they head their separate ways. At her office the next day she confides in her co-workers Beth (Jennifer Aniston) and Janine (Jennifer Connelly) who offer some tips on whether he will call. He doesn’t because “he is just not that into her.”

And so the movie goes. We learn about Janine’s marriage to Ben (Bradley Cooper) and his affair with Anna (Scarlett Johansson). Anna is the girl that Conor wants but she wants Ben. Ben’s best friend is Neil (Ben Affleck) who has been living with Beth for seven years but doesn’t want to get married. Beth does.

It is all kind of “sex degrees of separation from Kevin Bacon” with Gigi being “Kevin Bacon.” It all stems from her and her desire to find the one guy who is “just that into her.” Goodwin gets the most screen time but she is the least appealing actor in the film. Her clinginess in the role is grating and her whining gets old fast.

Best of all is screen favorite Aniston. She makes Beth someone we like to see and one for whom we are rooting all the way. Opposite her Affleck is kind of a non person.. She lights up the relationship only to have him pull it into the dark.

Others in the movie besides Connelly & Connolly, Cooper and Johansson are Drew Barrymore in a very small role, and Justin Long. They are all better than Goodwin but I have to admit she does grow on you a little by the end.

The film is funny and romantic and should entertain all age groups and genders. If you don’t like one particular character, wait a minute and five more will come along. One of those is bound to please you.

The movie is rated PG-13 for profanity and sexual situations. 

This is a movie to enjoy but not to take too seriously. It might offer some tips on the current dating scene but no one rule applies to all. Just see the movie for its entertainment value and not for its teaching power. 

Guys, take a chance on the film. You may find you will get into it more than you think. It sort of sneaks up on you with its charm and humor.

I scored “He’s Just Not that Into You” a second call 7 out of 10.

©2009 Jackie K. Cooper