Synopsis: Rachel (Ginnifer Goodwin) is a talented attorney at a top New York law firm, a generous and loyal friend, and, unhappily, still singleâas her engaged best friend Darcy (Kate Hudson) is constantly reminding her. But after celebrating her 30th birthday, perpetual good girl Rachel unexpectedly ends up in the arms of the guy she’s had a crush on since law school, Dex (Colin Egglesfield)… who just happens to be Darcy’s fiance.
As one thing leads to another in the frantic weeks leading up to Darcy’s wedding, Rachel finds herself in an impossible situation, caught between her treasured friendship with Darcy and the love of her life.
The romantic comedy “Something Borrowed” also stars John Krasinski as Ethan, Rachel’s constant confidante and sometimes conscience, who is busy evading the affection of Darcy’s hopelessly love-struck friend Claire (Ashley Williams) while harboring a secret crush of his own; and Steve Howey as the charming and irrepressible Marcus, whose designs on Rachel don’t necessarily exclude any other woman who catches his eye.
Release Date: May 6, 2011 MPAA Rating: PG-13
Genre(s): Romantic Comedy, Romance
Darcy (Kate Hudson) and Rachel (Ginnifer Goodwin) have been best friends their entire lives. Every important moment they have shared has been together. Rachel is the more mousey, brainy woman; Darcy the vivacious, center of attention–she even manages to make Rachel’s 30th birthday speech all about her, the only way Darcy can. These two very different women may be the closest of friends but things are about to get very complicated when Darcy’s fiance Dex (Colin Egglesfield) and Rachel have an affair. Their affair is years in the making, having met in law school where they almost got together, were it not for Darcy crashing their almost first date and Rachel swiftly stepping back to let Darcy have her way. Because that is what Rachel does, she lets Darcy run the show, and while this is story centered around the will they or won’t they get together of Rachel and Dex, it is also about Rachel finally taking control of her own life, and emotions.
The plot could not be more predictable, as just the summary above can clearly give you an idea of where things are going and the likelihood of where they will end. As much as it would be nice to say there is a great twist at the end there is not. This is formulaic romantic comedy filmmaking at its best, and also weakest as the characters are treated poorly given the script and even the performances are a constant let down. Dex may be a handsome man to look at but his range of emotions include one sad puppy dog look and another “I’m jealous” glare. Hudson plays the role well of the self-centered Darcy, dancing for the pure joy of being looked at and always making sure she gets all the attention. Goodwin’s Rachel is sweet, a perfect girl-next-door creation, without the deep emotions ever breaking through enough. When she finally has her “moment” it lacks effect on the viewer because you have watched her play the affable, never disagreeing woman for so long you do not believe she has actually changed. It is difficult to root for or feel much of anything for any of these characters, or to care where their future’s are going. But, as there always seems to be a “but” when it comes to romantic comedies, the movie is watchable. It cannot be said it is all that enjoyable, but it relies so heavily on familiar conventions that you fall into the comatose state that only a film of this genre has the ability to create.
As an adaptation to the bestselling novel “Something Borrowed”, those who have read the novel may be familiar with the manner of speaking of the characters. For those who have not (I being one), it may come as a shock to hear adults express themselves like teenagers. This lack of maturity plagues the entire film resulting in more laughter at their stupidity than empathy of their plight. The most asinine being the consistent “playing stupid” when one character says something and the other pretends to not know exactly what they meant, or the point they were trying to make. They know what is being said, or asked, yet screenwriter Jennie Snyder Urman plays them as childish adolescents when it comes to relationships and love instead of adults trying to make sense of a complicated situation. It is most disheartening as the story has a strong foundation to portray the complex relationship between female best friends, as well as the modern day perplexity of marriage.
The only characters with a semblance of balance and emotional depth are the supporting, Ethan (John Krasinski) and Marcus (Steve Howey). Although it may be a stretch to call Marcus’ emotions deep, he is for all intensive purposes honest with his intentions and does not pretend to not know what he wants, or the manner in which he plans to get it–his main goal is of course, a bed mate for the night. Ethan is the “other” best friend of Rachel. As different than Darcy as one can be he supports Rachel, respects her, and above all else is forthcoming with her when it comes to the predicament she has gotten herself into. Without Ethan Rachel may never have been able to grow as a person by film’s end, or come to realize how desperately she needs to respect herself and make her own choices, without always worrying about everyone else, Darcy included.
For a film centered around different relationships one expects more emotional depth and interesting characters. It does not take much to create an egotistical, vain, self-centered, female (Darcy) or her counterpoint best friend. It does take a great deal more to turn these characters, and the story itself, into a piece that elevates the role of women, their positions in relationships, and how they handle themselves. Screenwriter Jennie Snyder Urman has does nothing for the depiction of female characters on screen, or for women screenwriters with Something Borrowed.
Cast and Crew
- Director(s): Luke GreenfieldAaron LubinPamela Schein Murphy
- Producer(s): Molly Mickler SmithHilary SwankJennie Snyder Urman
- Screenwriter(s): Kate Hudson (Darcy)Ginnifer Goodwin (Rachel)John Krasinski (Ethan)
- Story: Colin Egglesfield (Dex)
- Cast: Steve Howey (Marcus)Ashley Williams (Claire) John AxelradCharles MinskyJane Musky
- Cinematographer: Alex Wurman
- Production Designer(s):
- Costume Designer:
- Casting Director(s):
- Music Score:
- Music Performed By:
- Country Of Origin: USA