The Flick Chicks

Judy Thorburn's Movie Reviews

What Happens in Vegas

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Judy Thorburn

"What Happens in Vegas" - You Can Bet On This Romantic Comedy

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"WHAT HAPPENS IN VEGAS" - YOU CAN BET ON THIS ROMANTIC COMEDY

Flick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha Chemplavil

It was bound to happen. It was just a matter of time that some writer would come up with a script based on that catch phrase “What Happens In Vegas” and run with it. The impression is that Las Vegas is the place to let your hair down and do anything for the sake of it because “what happens in Vegas” stays in Vegas. It’s great hype, but far from the truth as anyone who has visited sin city and lost their shirt gambling or done some other stupid things as a result of a drunken night of partying, will attest to. Just look at the number of celebrity mishaps which have taken place in Las Vegas and made the news. Brittany Spear’s quickie first marriage to a childhood chum and almost as quick annulment a day or two later could very well have been the inspiration for this very funny romantic comedy starring Ashton Kutcher and Cameron Diaz.

Diaz plays Joy McNally, a Wall Street stock trader whose been dumped by her fiancée, Mason (Jason Sudeikis), right in front of her friends just as she was about to throw him a surprise birthday party, no less. Cut to Ashton Kutcher as Jack Fuller, a fun loving bachelor and slacker who, at the same time in another part of the city, has been fired from his carpenter job at a woodworking shop by his boss, who happens to be his dad (Treat Williams). In an effort to forget their troubles Joy and Jack separately decide to fly to Las Vegas with their best friends where they first encounter each other after a computer error finds them booked into the same room at Planet Hollywood. It soon becomes clear these two strong characters are prone to one-upmanship. When Joy gets hotel management to make good by their mistake by offering them each penthouse suites, Jack, in turn, tries to match her by getting VIP tickets to shows and a chance to party the night away with Joy which she reluctantly agrees to do. The next morning Joy wakes up with a fake wedding ring on her finger and realizes she married the guy she barely knows and much less likes, while in a drunken stupor the night before. Agreeing to divorce and go their separate ways, things take an unexpected turn when Joy’s quarter winds up in Jack’s hand and a subsequent pull on a poker machine that, luck has it, results in a $3 million dollar jackpot. Back in New York, in a fight over the money, Jack and Joy land in court in front of Jude Whopper (Dennis Miller) who sentences them to six months of “hard marriage”, forcing them to make it work as husband and wife while their winnings are frozen. In addition, the judge orders them to make regular visits to Dr. Twitchell (Queen Latifah), a court appointed marriage counselor who will report back their progress.

What follows is a tete a tete game of wills as the duo attempts to sabotage each other so that they have justified grounds for a divorce. Joy moves in with Jack and the expected fights and humorous scenes occur from him being a slob and she, a neat freak. The Odd Couple routine is nothing new (most recently employed in Baby Mamma), but Kutcher and Diaz add their own ditzy spin to create some hilarious moments that work. However, the bit with Jack having to urinate in the sink might have come off more humorous if an almost identical scene hadn’t already been used in the aforementioned Baby Mamma.

Call it the battle of the sexes as Joy gets some advice from her friend Tipper (Lake Bell, who stole the thunder from Eva Longoria in “Over My Dead Body”) while Jack is being prodded by his lawyer best friend Hater (the hilarious Rob Corddry, who can be seen in the recent release, Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay) to use every angle they can devise to set their respective friends free, yet able to come away rich.

Meanwhile a sideline subplot revolves around Joy’s desire for a promotion back at work where she is in competition with another colleague and needs to make a good impression with her boss Mr. Banger (Dennis Farina). Enter Joy’s new hubby to pave the way in a surprising twist.

In the course of their disputes and breakups the couple occasionally lay down their guard revealing issues each eventually helps the other resolve. Being a “romantic” comedy, the predictability factor so, of course, we know where this is all headed.

What makes this film work is the amazing chemistry between the two engaging and attractive leads. It is entertaining to watch the way Kutcher and Diaz bounce off each other, create a believable spark, and are very funny without being annoyingly cute. No longer looking like an overgrown goofy kid, Kutcher has finally turned into a handsome leading man. And I am happy to add Diaz, as a comedic talent, proves she doesn’t have to shake her booty in front of the camera to get our attention.

Pleasantly surprised, I walked out of the theatre with a smile on my face having enjoyed many laughs from screenwriter Dana Fox’s amusing and clever script that doesn’t stoop to vulgarity or crude sight gags. Faced paced and easy on the eyes in more ways than one, What Happens in Vegas, is a great chick flick and date movie. I don’t gamble, but it’s a sure bet audiences will agree.