One of my fellow film critics breezed into Good Luck Chuck right before it began. "I don't even know what it's about," she noted as she sat. I, charitably, leaned forward with a synopsis: "Dane Cook plays a young man laboring under a curse where every woman he's involved with then goes on to find true love and marriage with the next man she dates. When he meets and falls for Jessica Alba, though, he wants to break the curse." I then added, half-hopingly and half-jokingly, "It may be a whimsical piece of magical realism."

I assure you wholeheartedly, it is not. The problem's not the pitch -- you could probably make a sweet, silly, movie from that premise -- but in the execution, which is so ham-fisted and blunt that you feel like you're being beaten about the head with clubs made out of artificial breasts, sexism, gross-out humor and Dane Cook's naked body. Another friend, after I dismissed Good Luck Chuck as unfunny trash, said "It'll probably be the top of the box office, then" and offered that I was "an elitist." Well, to paraphrase David Rees, if 'elitist' means 'not the dumbest person in the room,' then hell, yes, I'm an elitist. And Good Luck Chuck may make money; so does cocaine, but I don't feel like that alone is a reason to endorse either product.

During a teen game of spin-the-bottle, young Charles draws 'seven minutes in heaven' with a Goth girl who's secretly longed for him; spurning her advances, he brings down her wrath, and a curse. Leaping to the present day, Chuck (Dane Cook) has grown to be a dentist, and his 'lucky charm' status is something of an urban legend. Now, women hurl themselves at Chuck so that, after sleeping with him, they might then find true love. Chuck is willing to take advantage of this, but only up to a point: "What's sex without love?" His boorish plastic surgeon buddy Stu (Dan Fogler) howls an answer: "It's SEX! It's STILL SEX!"
categories Reviews, Cinematical