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Busted Tees


2006, Dir. Peyton Reed
105 min. Rated PG-13.
Starring: Vince "Money Baby" Vaughn, Rachel Green, the host of Dinner for Five, and a chick that used to sleep with Kevin Smith.

Review by Keith Nichols

Yes, I went to see The Breakup. [The Aniston/Pitt/Jolie joke would go here, if it hadn't already been done to death everywhere else.]

The previews have propped it up as a comedy, but I've already heard the first wave of backlash and it's warned me to expect a not-comedy about two people sadly breaking up. Man, I would've been pissed too if I brought a date to an ironically-titled romantic comedy that turned out to be a literally-titled buzzkiller. And it was a buzzkill. It reminded me of some of my own less-than-stellar meltdowns and breakups. It must've reminded other people too because people were actually crying a couple of times. (sigh)

Turns out this whole thing started because she refused to say "earmuffs" before going into a tirade of curse words.

Anyway, the first thing my grrl tells me (about Vince Vaughn) is that "he's so not in her league." I called bullshit on that and suggested that he's so money she doesn't even know it. Any guy in the room would've caught the "Swingers" reference (Jon Favreau's in This one too), but my grrl just rolled her eyes and gave me one of those dubious blow-off sighs. Whatever, grrl. Vince Vaughn is fricken COOL. He's no smokin' hottie like Brad Pitt, but Vince Vaughn is fricken COOL. And he IS funny in a movie that at least starts out as a comedy. He's cracking wise and snapping banter and playing the life-of-the-party as he's done many times before. If it seems he's almost TOO comfortable playing the role in the flick, perhaps it's cause he co-wrote and co-produced the thing. It was Vince Vaughn doing classic Vince Vaughn.

-Oh, and Jennifer Aniston is still hot. I can't tell you how disappointed I was at the conveniently out-of-focus full backal nudity, but when they titilated my imagination with her getting a "Telly Savalas" bikini wax... I had completely worthwhile impure thoughts. The only problem is... my grrl turns to me, unsolicited, and says: "Never gonna happen." More buzzkill.

The movie's good though. Not a date movie unless you're solidly in a long-term relationship and you can appreciate it for the eye-opener it tries to be. It reminds you how bad it sucks to lose somebody you care about and how many chances we all seem to have to head it off before it even gets to that point. It has some moments where it pushes the envelope, but it never gets to the War of the Roses over-the-top point. It just shows you, like a train wreck in slow motion, how a relationship can go off track and stay off track. That said, it has it's funny moments and it's more eye-opener, like I said, than doom and gloom. And at the end, even though they're not together, they're not that far apart. Decent movie.

Aniston and Vaughn both did a good job and Jon Favreau hangs in there like the wobbly third wheel he's meant to be. At one point Favreau seems to turn a corner from the stereotypical "bad friend who's gonna talk you into doing something dumb" into the "good friend who's gonna keep it real for you". It's alittle abrupt, but the epiphany seems logical enough (maybe it was brewing under the surface), so you buy it. -Until he does another U-turn and goes BACK to being the bad friend who's talking his buddy into doing dumb shite again. Whatever.

John Michael Higgins (A Mighty Wind) stole a few scenes as Aniston's ambiguously gay brother. I wanted to see more Jason Bateman (who does a good job toning his presence down a notch). I wanted to see more Joey Lauren Adams (who's actually starting to lose some of the edge to her hotness). Ralphie from A Christmas Story was there (and co-producing too even). Vincent D'Onofrio seemed an odd casting decision as Vaughn's brother, but who knows where that guy's going now that he's been on the small screen ("Law & Order") for a few years.

Overall a decent movie that's worth catching on cable or DVD unless you hate Vince Vaughn or think Jennifer Aniston's overrated.


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