WHAT'S YOUR NUMBER?
Tired of failed love affairs, when Ally Darling (Anna Farris) reads an article in Marie Claire warning that people having had 20 or more relationships are destined to have missed their chance of true love, she makes a list. Horrified that her number totals 20, she decides, with the help of her next door neighbour Colin Shea (Chris Evans) to track down her exes, who she may now find to be more suitable. With her younger sister Daisy (Ari Graynor) soon to be married, the pressure is on, compounded by her bickering separated parents (Blythe Danner and Ed Begley Jnr).
Review by Louise Keller:
Short of laughs and good ideas, What’s Your Number is a misdial on the chick flick calendar. It’s no fault of Anna Faris, who is a natural comedic talent, but the material (adapted from Karyn Bosnak’s novel 20 Times a Lady) is too flimsy and doesn’t fire. Unfortunately this script fails to come up with the goods, coupled by zero chemistry between Faris and leading man Chris Evans.
When we first meet Ally Darling (Faris), she wakes up tousle-haired next to one of a string of guys she has recently dated. He might be her 20th lover, but Mr Right he is obviously not. After Ally asks her about-to-be married younger sister Daisy (Graynor) how many relationships does she need to have before meeting the right guy, she finds the answer – in Marie Claire Magazine. A girl is unlikely to find a husband after 20 lovers, it seems.
Intent on taking control of her destiny (and her pelvic floor), Ally decides the best way forward is to explore her past. If, like good wine, men get better over time, why not rediscover a gem from the past? Especially when her laid-back muso neighbour Colin Shea (Evans) offers his investigative skills to help locate them. Director Mark Mylod directs the upcoming sequences in which Ally reconnects with a string of ex-beaux like a sit-com – it’s all played for laughs with no substance.
There’s a laid-back charm in the easy relationship between Faris and Evans, who has a likeable screen presence, but the sparks are missing. The running gag involving Ally’s separated parents (Danner, Begley Jr.) amuses but it is only the relationship between Ally and Daisy that actually feels real. The film’s motto to be who you are is fine, but the unimaginative journey we take is manufactured and a trifle dull.
First Published in the Sun-Herald
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WHAT'S YOUR NUMBER? (MA15+)
CAST: Chris Evans, Anna Faris, Mike Vogel, Martin Freeman, Zachary Quinto, Joel McHale, Thomas Lennon, Andy Samberg, Chris Pratt
PRODUCER: Beau Flynn, Tripp Vinson
DIRECTOR: Mark Mylod
SCRIPT: Gabrielle Allan, Jennifer Crittenden (Novel '20 Times a Lady' by Karyn Bosnak)
CINEMATOGRAPHER: J. Michael Muro
EDITOR: Julie Monroe
MUSIC: Aaron Zigman
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Jon Billington
RUNNING TIME: 99 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Fox
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: October 13, 2011
RIVERSIDE SCREEN PREMIERES
A program of premiere screenings of new movies prior to their commercial release
on 6 consecutive Tuesdays, starts February 17, 2015 at Riverside Theatre,
Curated & presented by Andrew L. Urban, discussion to
follow with special guests. Briefing notes provided.