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WHAT'S YOUR NUMBER?: DVD

SYNOPSIS:
Tired of failed love affairs, when Ally Darling (Anna Farris) reads an article in Marie Claire warning that people having had 20 or more relationships are destined to have missed their chance of true love, she makes a list. Horrified that her number totals 20, she decides, with the help of her next door neighbour Colin Shea (Chris Evans) to track down her exes, who she may now find to be more suitable. With her younger sister Daisy (Ari Graynor) soon to be married, the pressure is on, compounded by her bickering separated parents (Blythe Danner and Ed Begley Jnr).

Review by Louise Keller:
Short of laughs and good ideas, What's Your Number is a misdial on the chick flick calendar. It's no fault of Anna Faris, who is a great natural comedic talent, but the material (adapted from Karyn Bosnak's novel 20 Times a Lady) is too flimsy and just doesn't fire. A film with a gimmick isn't necessarily bad - How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days had its charms (and Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey) and Friends With Benefits offered more than expected (as well as Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis). Unfortunately, Gabrielle Allan and Jennifer Crittenden's script fails to come up with the goods coupled by zero chemistry between Faris and Chris Evans.

When we first meet Ally Darling (Faris), she is waking up tousle-haired next to one of a string of guys she has recently dated. Mr Right he is obviously not. After Ally asks her about-to-be married younger sister Daisy (Ari Graynor) the rhetorical question of how many relationships does she need to have before meeting the right guy, she finds the answer - in Marie Claire Magazine. A girl is unlikely to find a husband after 20 lovers, it seems.

Intent on taking control of her destiny (and her pelvic floor), Ally decides that the best way forward is to explore her past. If, like good wine, men get better over time, why not rediscover a gem from the past? Especially when her laid-back muso neighbour Colin Shea (Evans) offers his investigative skills to help locate them. Director Mark Mylod directs the upcoming sequences in which Ally reconnects with a string of ex-beaux like a sit-com: it's all played for laughs with no substance.

The scene in which Ally dons a wavering English accent for Simon (Martin Freeman), the English divorcee is embarrassing as plum-in-mouth becomes Eliza Doolittle before morphing into Borat. Ditto for the visit to Miami for a Pap Smear from her gynaecologist-ex, Barrett (Thomas Lennon), who only seems to recognise her vagina? Things spark up in Washington with Tom (Anthony Mackie), the ambitious politician, when Ally squeezes into a hot red dress that is a size too small, but the moment is short-lived.

There's a laid-back charm in the easy relationship between Faris and Evans, who has a likeable screen presence, but it is totally devoid of sparks. The running gag involving Ally's separated parents (Blythe Danner, Ed Begley Jr.) is quite amusing but it is the relationship between Ally and Daisy that actually feels real. The film's motto to be who you are is fine, but the unimaginative journey we take is manufactured and a trifle dull.

Published February 15, 2012

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 1
Mixed: 0

WHAT'S YOUR NUMBER?: DVD (MA15+)
(US, 2011)

CAST: Chris Evans, Anna Faris, Mike Vogel, Martin Freeman, Zachary Quinto, Joel McHale, Thomas Lennon, Andy Samberg, Chris Pratt

PRODUCER: Beau Flynn, Tripp Vinson

DIRECTOR: Mark Mylod

SCRIPT: Gabrielle Allan, Jennifer Crittenden (Novel '20 Times a Lady' by Karyn Bosnak)

CINEMATOGRAPHER: J. Michael Muro

EDITOR: Julie Monroe

MUSIC: Aaron Zigman

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Jon Billington

RUNNING TIME: 99 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Fox

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: October 13, 2011

PRESENTATION: 16:9

SPECIAL FEATURES: .

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Fox Home Entertainment

DVD RELEASE: February 8, 2012







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