Directors: Josh Gordon & Will Speck
Thanks to the likes of “American Pie” and “Superbad,” the gross-out comedy has not only proved extremely popular amongst audiences, but also managed to make the romantic comedy look rather twee by comparison. Consequently, many modern ‘rom-coms’ strive hard to add an edginess and sharp humor that’s generally not typical of a genre that usually delights in the light and the saccharine. At first glance, “The Switch” looks as if it comes with top credentials being based on a short story by author Jeffrey Eugenides and starring Jason Bateman and Jennifer Aniston, who showed she had range in (another edgy rom-com) “The Break-up.”
Kassie has decided that, partner or not, she wants to have a baby. Her neurotic best friend Wally reluctantly stands by and watches her make plans to secure a sperm donor. At an ‘insemination party’ Kassie gets ready to do the deed: but Wally has drunkenly spilled the ‘donation’ and proceeds to make one of his own. Fast forward seven years and Wally (with hardly any recollection of the fateful night years previously) and Kassie reconnect. Along with her young son. Who is suspiciously a lot like Wally...
This tries really hard to be a sophisticated and adult piece of work. Truth be told, it tries a little bit too hard and can’t decide whether it wants to be a biting analysis of modern relationships or a sweet tale about a couple falling in love. Consequently, it all feels a bit of a mess and it doesn’t help that the entire premise of the story takes a long time to set up, and feels almost ridiculously contrived.
Bateman and Aniston (who is back in ‘I am playing Rachel in Friends’ mode) are fine, and do have one or two really good lines, but don’t have any real chemistry together, whilst the direction is flat and rather uninteresting.
It has the occasional good moment, but “The Switch” fails to push any buttons. Or, indeed, pull any switches.
Now showing in all three countries.