FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS

Wasn’t this movie released six months ago under the title No Strings Attached? If, like me, you read the synopsis and groaned, “same premise, different smell” you’ll be pleasantly surprised by this lighthearted and charming rom-com. The charismatic Justin Timberlake plays Dylan, an art director who is headhunted to move from LA to the big apple by quirky tough-talking new yawker Jamie (an orange-faced and lovable, Mila Kunis).

Jamie and Dylan have a few things in common – they both have daddy issues, irresponsible mothers, and have recently  been dumped which means they want sex without a relationship. But we’re talking Hollywood here so it gets complicated (wasn’t that another recent film title?) and people get hurt. The film tries to turn the rom-com genre on its head by poking fun at chick flicks and making the gay friend (a penis-obsessed Woody Harrelson) Dylan’s not Jamie’s. It kinda fails at this, but great onscreen chemistry between the stars; fun “i-heart-ny” sentiments; and witty, energetic dialogue is enough to make up for it.

Published in TNT Downunder Magazine online and in print on August 15, 2011. 

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