Movie review – A self-aware romcom cliche

2011-09-16 09:07

Film: Friends With Benefits (Ster-Kinekor)
Director: Will Gluck
Featuring: Mila Kunis, Justin Timberlake, Patricia Clarkson, Jenna Elfman, Bryan Greenberg, Richard Jenkins and Woody Harrelson
Rating: 7/10

There has been a rush of films this year with the premise of friends who decide to stay that way, but add sex to the equation.

They all end the same way – two people fall in love and discover that emotional mess is, in fact, what makes
us human.

It’s a bit odd that both Oscar winner Natalie Portman and her co-star in Black Swan, Mila Kunis, both picked the same kind of project as an antidote to the deep, dark place that Black Swan took them to.

Portman teamed up with flop master Ashton Kutcher in No Strings Attached, which was released earlier this year.

Friends With Benefits, which stars Kunis, is pretty much the same story, but well executed with plenty of wit.

Kunis has a comedy background and is so much more suited to this genre than Portman.

The story – which is self-aware enough to refer to romcom cliches – is filled with them.

Kunis is a recently dumped headhunter who lures Justin Timberlake from California to New York to take a job at a fancy magazine.

He’s a commitment-phobic, good-time guy with a tragic past. So far so unremarkable, but the script is well written and the supporting cast is hilarious – Patricia Clarkson as the free-spirited mother, Jenna Elfman as the sensible sister and Woody Harrelson as the gay sports writer.

Friends With Benefits is a bit of froth for a Friday night that will work equally well for date night as it will for ladies’ night.

Either way, you will emerge as a Kunis convert.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.