The Ugly Truth
Running Time: 96 minutes
Starring: Gerard Butler, Katherine Heigl
Directed By: Robert Luketic
Rating: 4 out of 10
A woman tries out some unorthodox advice in her pursuit of the perfect man.
Within the last few years someone in Hollywood realized that not only women watch romantic comedies. It took a smart person to realize this as millions upon millions of guys have been forced to the theatre. They have been going as a boyfriend, a date, or a husband capacity to watch the dreaded Rom-Com. This doesn’t even include that some guys actually like romantic comedies. So with that realization comes a new style of romantic comedy with edgier topics and saltier language. While I applaud the attempt to appeal to both genders I frown upon the finished product. The Ugly Truth is the story of Abby and Mike. Abby is a prudish and romantically challenged producer on a television show. Mike is a male chauvinistic pig who is hired to increase the ratings of the show and as a side project tries to help Abby find true love.
Nothing can make a guy’s testicles retreat up into his body faster than mentioning Katherine Heigl is in the movie. It is as if she wants the entire male race to hate her with bad romantic comedy after bad romantic comedy and this one doesn’t help her cause. The film starts and we get to follow Abby as she produces her struggling television show. Abby is supposedly this self empowered woman and yet she gushes like a little school girl over love and romance. She has a list of things that make up the perfect guy and even does a stupid dance when things go her way in the love department. Then we are introduced to Mike and of course he is the polar opposite to Abby in every regard. He has a show about men and woman that would make cavemen blush. Mike is the pessimist and Abby the optimist. He offers a very upfront approach on dating and sex on a small television segment called the Ugly Truth. Naturally Abby hates him but ultimately needs his advice to find her dream guy. So after a little posturing she becomes his project to find the ideal mate. Although Mike is the only redeeming quality to this film he is not a great fit in the movie. He casually mentions things like anal sex, Jell-O wrestling, oral sex, and a list of other things that are not typically found in a romantic comedy and it was poor attempt at humor. Having Abby as this naive and somewhat immature woman hanging out with a foul mouthed ass of a guy is not only strange it is a little perverse. Of course everyone at the television station loves Mike as he is charming in his crass way and Abby struggles to learn his ways to court her perfect man. The odd relationship leads to some interesting but ultimately stupid situations.
Abby is played by Katherine Heigl and she is meh in the role. It is like she knows this is all she can do so she has lost her passion for acting. Mike her mentor is played by Gerard Butler and he is okay in the role. His character is great it is just not that hard of a role to pull off. The two of them together are miserable. She acts like she is twelve and he is an idiot and to top it all off they are not even a good on screen couple. I could never picture the two of them together from the DVD cover and they look even worse on screen together.
So the movie never hits the proper level of entertainment. It was truly a weird blend of romantic comedy mixed with R Rated overtones. For every inappropriate ass slap, there is a scene of Abby falling in love. For every success at work or in Abby’s personal life, there is a lewd sexual reference. The low point of this film is an unoriginal orgasm scene at a restaurant that will make you think of When Harry Met Sally. Is this film supposed to be about finding your soul mate or about sex? It never really picks a course and so the viewer is left in limbo as the story struggles its way to the end. You won’t care about the characters, you won’t care about the outcome, and lastly you will hate Heigl just a little bit more. The pinacle of your angst will be most apparent when she is creepily hanging out in a tree spying on her semi clad neighbor. The truth maybe ugly but so was this film for the most part.
Director Robert Luketic knows Rom-Com (Monster-In-Law, Win a Date with Tad Hamilton!) and did an okay job with this film. I was negative in my review but you can’t fault someone for trying something new to capture a bigger audience. The film was never slow and it did have a couple of laughs here and there. The casting was really off though and the story was unsettling for the most part. At the end of the day this movie was neither romantic nor a comedy and it failed when it easily could have succeeded.
I cannot recommend this film but I will say it is a decent compromise for guys having to watch a Rom-Com.
T Factor + If you like Katherine Heigl as an actress than this could score higher on the rating scale.
T Factor – If you do not like the idea of an R-Rated Rom-Com than this could score lower on the rating scale.
If you liked this film reel recommendations: My Best Friend’s Girl, Sex Drive.