Greg Kinnear is writer William Borgens, who split up with his wife (Jennifer Connelly) a couple of years ago, but hasn’t let go, including hanging around her house and spying through the windows despite the fact she has a new man. He lives with his two kids, Samantha (Lily Collins), who has never forgiven her mother for leaving and has decided she doesn’t want a relationship and would prefer fleeting encounters, and the younger Rusty (Nat Woolf).
All three face issues with new relationships, with William unsure what is going on with his neighbour (Kristen Bell), Sam resisting the charms of Louis (Logan Lerman) despite the fact she likes him, and Rusty falling for the troubled Kate.
Stuck In Love is an odd film, as if writer director Josh Boone is smart in some areas but unable to see others, leaving large holes in the movie’s characters. Part of the problem is that often the people come across more as brushstrokes than people. For example the idea with Sam that she’s actively avoiding relationships because of what happened to her parents is an interesting thing to explore, but there’s not really a lot more to her than that, and even then the movie can’t find much depth in it and what it means.
Even so, there’s enough to hold your interest as it potters along for most of the running time. Unfortunately though it falls to bits completely at the end, with what seems to be the fever dream of someone who never quite got over their parents’ divorce. In some ways it would be typical of a normal Hollywood movie but doesn’t really fit with what’s gone before here, especially considering the journey it’s presented us that William has been on. Indeed in some lights in could be seen as rather sexist, with the movie treating what William did in a different way than when his wife does the exact same thing.
It’s a shame really as there’s a lot of potential, but sadly most of it is squandered.
Overall Verdict: A missed opportunity thanks to characters who are more traits than people and an ending that cops out on what it’s seemed the movie has been about.
Reviewer: Tim Isaac