Thursday, May 6, 2010

What I Think Of: The Bounty Hunter (2010)

What do you get when you team up two really good looking and fun actors, one who sends women all a-flutter with his washboard abs, the other formerly America's sweetheart who has aged really damn well? You get probably one of the Top 5 worst movies to be released in 2010. Again proving I'll watch every rom-com that's released, here we have The Bounty Hunter. This is a 2010 action romantic comedy directed by Andy Tennant (of recently Hitch and Fool's Gold infamy) as stars Gerard Butler and Jennifer Aniston as ex's in a cat and mouse game for their lives. Butler stars as Milo, a bounty hunter who finds that his next assignment is to bring his bail-jumping journalist ex-wife Nicole, to jail. However, things turn out generically, as the couple find themselves on the run for their lives when Nicole's current investigation appears more than it seems. They must fake being married again and hide out or be found and live down their vows "to death do us part" (and yes I went there). Here are my initial thoughts after watching the film:

  • This film is actually stunningly bad. I mean I know it has an 8% score on Rotten Tomatoes, but I think that's still being generous. Granted, the trailers looked terrible, but I thought I would get at the very least a generic romantic comedy (which I can always watch), but this is like a hybrid of generic romantic comedy with even a more generic action movie and wow, it's like at the end someone slapped me in the face, looked in my wallet, scoffed at what they saw and then left, leaving me with my money but without my dignity.
  • But the key to how bad I should have known this movie would be was that its directed by Andy Tennant who directed Matthew Mconaughey and Kate Hudson in Fool's Gold, which made my worst movie list of 2008. He was able to take two actors who starred in a film I really liked (How to lose a guy in 10 days) and then reunite them in a movie that made me wish I had lost my very eyesight. It's a shame too, since his directing career started out promisingly. Sure Fools Rush In is generic, but at least it wasn't insulting, and I love Ever After. I mean I've watched that like 20 times that movie is so good. But yeah, no more. You have once again taken two actors I really liked, put them together and made me never want to watch them in another movie again. At the very least I can say this one positive about director Andy Tennant, "I believe from now on I can always count on you to create a movie that will make my bottom list at the end of the year and give me something to talk about. For that, I thank you from the bottom of my heart."
  • I'm a big fan of Gerard Butler, but I think this is easily his worst performance. It's like he ate a ham sandwich before shooting and decided to act the entire movie in a really overly dramatic and hammy way. It actually made me really sad to watch him sink so low. But hey, it's a pay check and he got to hang out with Jennifer Aniston, so that's a plus.
  • On that note, damn Jennifer Aniston still looks really good. I think she's gotten hotter in her old age. Sure, she still acts like Rachel in everything she does, but I don't care. She's just damn hot and well, I actually like her Rachel shtick, so I'll watch her in anything, and I thought she was really good in Love Happens.
  • However, while I don't think Andy Tennant's direction helped, I can't say he should shoulder all the blame. Sarah Thorp's script is really frustrating. The whole movie doesn't know what it want's to be. A comedy? Well it isn't funny and there's no standout comedic moments. An action film? Well, the action scenes are really poorly shot and the plot that sets up the action actually makes very little sense. A romance? Well, we also don't really have that, and the reason why the couple originally divorced is just as poorly thought out and constructed as the rest of the movie. In the end, the movie tries to be three things, but leaves the viewer with nothing.
  • Seriously, Gerard Butler is terrible in this film, and his character isn't really all that likable. And for that matter, neither is Aniston's, so you're left watching the movie, with two pretty terrible people not caring if they get back together, or perhaps hoping they do because they deserve to make each other miserable.
  • In the end, I wish I could say something positive beyond, "wow Jennifer Aniston still looks really good", but I'll frankly be stunned if there is a worst romantic comedy then this one released this year. It seems like director Andy Tennant has forgotten how to present believable and interesting characters, and like how Uwe Boll's name is synonymous with the worst of video game adaptations, Tennant's name is now synonymous with the worst of rom-coms.

A definite "sneak out/I want my money back" rating. It's a damn shame this movie has already made around $121 million worldwide which will keep producers green-lighting films like this as long as big names are attached to the finished product. Anyway, do yourself a favor and stay away from this one no matter how much you may like the actors in it.

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