Mommy & Me Movie Review: He’s Just Not That Into You

I’d never see this movie ordinarily, but when it’s Mommy & Me Movie Time, I take advantage to go do something with my baby. Which is why Ben and I went to see “He’s Just Not That Into You” a week ago, for the Mommy & Me Movie. Ben says that he felt that the movie was cliched, trite, and populated entirely by one-dimensional characters. He also remarked that if everyone was as stupid about relationships as these people in the movie, there wouldn’t be enough babies to populate that theater. He did, however, appreciate that the movie was just long enough for him to get a quality nap in, on one of the huge Grove theater chairs. Here he is napping:

From January 25th Ben Download

I felt more like the characters were written as archetypes than as actual people: the Desperate Single Gal, the Selectively Desperate Cock Tease, the Dick of a Husband, etc. Jennifer Aniston, surprisingly, created one of the more vibrant characters in the movie, as the Woman Whose Boyfriend Was Too Scared To Propose, who returns to her family, and holds her head up high despite their backwards attitudes towards a single woman in the midst. I was impressed by her performance, as I was by Ben Affleck’s. The rest of the movie was just actors who didn’t really have to Make An Effort, because their own personalities were so similar to the character they were playing.

The movie also felt strangely dated to me. Since the book came out a few years ago, or even since Sex & The City went mainstream, isn’t the need for these kind of “he’s just not that into you” revelations kind of over? Don’t we all GET IT already? These may be applicable lessons for 22 year olds, but real, grown up women seem to know how the system works.

I think this is a rapidly eroding idea, that women have to be told, “he’s just not that info you.” It can be argued that, since feminism is only a fifty year old phenomenon, and since marriage was an accepted & a given even in our parents’ generation, it may just be that society is still catching up to women’s new role outside the home. I think it’s just going to take a little while for marriage to be less of a central focus and a goal for women. I think once all women are able to balance everything they want, and the glass ceiling is eliminated, and all options are truly open to us, then relationships will be equal partnerships, men will hold less power, and we will all be able to get over this kind of petty crap.

The movie did scare me enough that I had to immediately call my husband and tell him I love him and I am glad to have him. I think Paul is awesome, and I love and appreciate him more every day of our lives. And we DO have an equal partnership marriage, which is important to me.

I think that someone needs to write a book that is made into a movie that is more positive. Not so much how to recognize when a man isn’t into you, but how to start and nurture a relationship where he is. I think about how I met my husband a lot, because so much of this seems to be just finding that person who is a good fit for you. I met my husband at a goth club, after all, after I said, to hell with it, I’m going to go be as weird and scary and spooky as I want, because that is who I am. And as soon as I embraced that again, and launched myself back into listening to Combichrist and the Birthday Massacre and Depeche Mode, presto, husband!

So here’s another flaw in HJNTIY: none of these women seemed to have anything particularly interesting about them. The Ginnifer Goodwin character’s main personality trait seemed to be that she was neurotic about men. The Jennifer Connelly character seemed to just be wrapped up in the redecoration of their house. The only one who had a scrap of personality OUTSIDE of husband-related territory was the ScarJo character, who was a singer-songwriter and a yoga instructor and at the end of the movie, said she was going to take some time to be introspective and go to India. None of the other characters seemed to care about anything other than getting a boyfriend/husband and then making a home with him. These are important things, of course. I care quite a bit about making a nice home with my husband. But did any of them care about art, or reading, or music? Did they have hobbies? Did they travel? WHO WERE THEY? This is what I want to know. Maybe this is what the men wanted to know as well, which is why they just weren’t into them.

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