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HOW TO BE SINGLE

SYNOPSIS: New York City is full of lonely hearts seeking the right match, and what Alice, Robin, Lucy, Meg, Tom and David all have in common is the need to learn how to be single in a world filled with ever-evolving definitions of love.

Review by Louise Keller:
There's a welcome zany energy about this Sex and the City wannabe, but too many plot strands with characters that have minimal appeal stop the ultimate sizzle. If only the screenwriters had concentrated more on Dakota Johnson's central character of Alice and Rebel Wilson's zany, foul-mouthed Robin, the film might had the kind of chemistry two people crave for in a relationship.

Johnson has great appeal as Alice, who takes a break from her long term relationship and heads to the Big Apple to find out who she really is. Of course things don't pan out as she expects but her emotional journey is one to which we can relate. Sort of. The tone is set when Robin gives Alice - the new paralegal - the office tour, pointing out all the cupboards and corners where hanky panky can or cannot take place in full view (or not) of the security cameras. Wilson has great energy and even if we don't believe much of what we see and hear, she has entertainment and shock value. She has quite a mouth and although some of the descriptions and references to such things as LTRP make you shake your head is disbelief (you'll have to see the film to find out what that is), there is a nice dichotomy between them.

Less successful is the story strand involving Lucy (Alison Brie), a man-hungry desperate who frequents the bar where everyone hangs out, flaunting her hook-ups from 10 different dating sites. Tom (Anders Holm), the resident playboy bartender is rather annoying and it is difficult to believe that all the girls end up in his bedroom. The subplot with Leslie Mann's Meg, a gynecologist who dislikes babies and happens to be Alice's sister is irritating beyond belief. The leap from disliking babies to desperately one of her own is ludicrous and her relationship with a younger man is pure sitcom material.

As Alice's love life takes twists and turns involving her former boyfriend Josh (Nicholas Braun), real estate developer David (Damon Wayans Jr) and Tom the bartender, Robin is the conduit that keeps everything afloat. But it's no Sex and the City, although girls looking for a fun-night might be more forgiving.

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 1

HOW TO BE SINGLE (M)
(US, 2016)

CAST: Dakota Johnson, Alison Brie, Leslie Mann, Rebel Wilson, Anders Holm, Damon Wayans Jr, Jake Lacy, Jason Mantzoukas, Nicholas Braun

PRODUCER: Drew Barrymore, Dana Fox, Nancy Juvonen, John Rickard

DIRECTOR: Christian Ditter

SCRIPT: Dana Fox, Abby Kohn, Marc Silverstein (novel by Liz Tuccillo)

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Christian Rein

EDITOR: Tia Nolan

MUSIC: Fil Eisler

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Steve Saklad

RUNNING TIME: 111 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: February 18, 2016







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