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Overall Rating

Awesome: 2.27%
Worth A Look: 13.64%
Just Average40.91%
Pretty Crappy: 20.45%
Sucks: 22.73%

9 reviews, 34 user ratings

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Failure to Launch
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by Matt Mulcahey

"There are worse ways to spend 97 minutes.Like watching The Wedding Planner."
3 stars

Sign No. 479 that you’ve just been duped into watching a chick flick – The last frame features Matthew McConaughey frolicking with a dolphin.

That’s right, everyone’s favorite naked bongo playing, drawling Texas stoner is back for another moderately tolerable yet instantly forgettable trip through rom-com land, which is at least better than a return visit to dwarf movie land or fire-breathing dragon land.

Suspending disbelief long enough to accept that the genes of Terry Bradshaw and Kathy Bates could possibly produce pretty boy McConaughey, the high-concept Failure to Launch finds Bradshaw and Bates frustrated by their 35-year-old slacker son’s insistence on living at home despite a lucrative gig as a boat broker and a harem of willing ladies.

To expedite an empty nest (and give Bradshaw the “naked room” he longs for), the pair hire “interventionist” Sarah Jessica Parker, whose job consists of tricking emotionally stunted, socially inept grown sons out of their parents’ basements and into the real world. Parker’s technique consists of infusing these Star Wars-obsessed dweebs (typified by Patton Oswalt in an amusing bit) with enough confidence to strike out on their own by pretending to fall for them. That task proves more difficult with McConaughey, an immature lothario who uses his stay-at-home-son status to ward off any woman inching too close and to avoid dealing with a painful past relationship that feels much too melodramatic for a film this otherwise trifling.

Of course, McConaughey eventually discovers the truth. Of course, Parker has fallen for his naked bongo playing, drawling Texas stoner charms by then. And of course, the pair work it out and live a happy, dolphin-frolicking existence together.

Partly because they’re more interesting than the mismatched leads and partly because without them and a string of unfunny animal attacks the sitcom-y premise would never reach its minimal running time, director Tom Dey (he of buddy movies Showtime and Shanghai Noon) spends as much time focusing on peripheral characters as his stars. Sometimes, those digressions are to the film’s benefit (a romance between Parker’s abrasive roommate Zooey Deschanel and McConaughey’s basement dwelling mamma’s boy pal Justin “I was the retarded kid in Gigli” Bartha). Sometimes they aren’t (any scene with McConaghey’s annoying, vaguely defined New Age-y pal Bradley Cooper of Wedding Crashers fame).

This is strictly “Date Night” rental fare for those hoping to be making out before the end credits roll. A word of advice on that count – you might not want to wait too long before making your move, because nothing kills a mood faster than Terry Bradshaw’s naked ass.

link directly to this review at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=14094&reviewer=255
originally posted: 06/28/06 00:51:28
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User Comments

8/21/17 Louise Cr@p of the lowest order. Only saw it because it was shown during a flight. 1 stars
3/13/12 May Q. Horney Yes, Lenny,Zooey's best thing about it; Too bad she still might've"jumped the shark" herein 2 stars
9/20/09 the dork knight fast-paced movies with some snappy jokes. Zooey is damn cute 4 stars
1/13/09 Anonymous. another just-okay chick flick. chick flicks are usually not great films. :P 3 stars
10/03/08 Lenny Zane Shows Zooey Deschanel can be best thing in a flick even when made to look like an idiot. 2 stars
9/30/08 Shaun Wallner Awesome story! 5 stars
9/13/08 Tabitha Cartwright Zooey Des Chanel is hilarious as mockingbird stalker, but main plot's a waste. 2 stars
10/05/07 Bitchflaps Appalling and unwatchable. Every single scene falls flat on its face. 1 stars
4/28/07 Miss Me I like it, but they could have done it with Kate Hudson instead of Sarah Jessica Parker... 4 stars
4/25/07 Snots Appalling. Almost physically painful to watch. 1 stars
4/05/07 Matt Forgettable and lacking in chemistry, but it has its funny moments. Okay for a rainy day. 3 stars
2/24/07 Jack Sommersby Absolutely dreadful from first scene to last. 1 stars
12/04/06 Stanley Thai The film is bad but the characters are likable but it's not a funny comedy... 2 stars
7/21/06 Joe Smaltz liked it, cute, good acting, will be around in repeats for a long time 4 stars
7/18/06 Higby Boring, devoid of originality, of humour, and I wish it were devoid of Bradshaw's bare ass! 1 stars
7/11/06 Ole Man Bourbon Cute, but has some stupid/superfluous subplots. 3 stars
7/03/06 Monday Morning I've seen a LOT worse lately. Namely, "Rumor Has It". 3 stars
6/30/06 Christopher With only a few romantic comedies a year standards drop and this becomes acceptable. OK. 3 stars
6/27/06 Louise Total crap! Can't stand MM - only watched it cos it was on the plane. 1 stars
6/21/06 Melissa Toadstool Very stupid, but still I enjoyed it. Zooey D as dumb non-blonde hilarious despite meanness. 4 stars
6/02/06 The Velcro Warlock Yep, Anna Faris, Zooey Deschanel, Mandy Moore - wish they'd all return to likeable roles! 3 stars
6/02/06 Julia Cox ZD has fallien into the Mandy Moore syndrome - Seemingly lovable actresses playing shrews. 3 stars
6/02/06 Marcia Zarwetten-Grassi O how sad, Ashley! Or do you mean "better than I"? 3 stars
5/07/06 Diane Perkins boring and very predictable 2 stars
5/02/06 Ashley OK movie, my 48 year old father liked it better than me. 3 stars
4/27/06 julie fun, entertaining, not much chemistry, but I laughed alot 4 stars
4/09/06 Ron Newbold Better than expected - but not great 3 stars
4/07/06 Eber Clease MM looked too old to be 35, he shld stick to masked parts from now on; like a LOTR's ghoul 1 stars
4/06/06 Troy M. Grzych Had it's problems, but fun None-the-less. Always a fan of films made in New Orleans!!! 4 stars
3/30/06 Soha Molina ok 3 stars
3/27/06 Joe Schiappa Not as bad as you would think 3 stars
3/16/06 Steve Michaud Would have been far better had it been primarily about Zooey Deschanel's character 2 stars
3/13/06 Lester M. Davis Very good "no think" comedy. 5 stars
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  10-Mar-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 27-Jun-2006



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