Kate Holbrook (Tina Fey) is an executive in an organic foods company (similar to a Whole Foods) which, over the years, has earned her many accolades and much professional success. At 37 years old, she realizes that her personal life is not as meaningful and fulfilling as she would like it to be. Her biological clock is ticking like there?s no tomorrow and she is ready to start a family. While she is still single, that?s not going to stop her!
We see her visit a sperm bank, pick out her donor, and begin her insemination process. After taking a pregnancy test, it comes back negative. So, that?s a ?no go.? She then visits her OB-Gyn, who lets her know that she cannot conceive a child. Another ?no go.? Anyway, after weighing all of her options, she turns to a surrogate parenting service, headed by the slightly pompous Sigourney Weaver.
After a bit of time goes by, in comes the possible surrogate mother! Angie (Amy Poehler) is bit of a rough and tumble gal with a skeevy common-law husband (Dax Shepard). When the agreement is made for Angie to be impregnated with Kate?s eggs, everything starts to pull together, or so we think.
After she ditches her husband, Angie shows up at Kate?s apartment and moves in. Best way to define their relationship at this point? They?re a female version of Felix and Oscar. Angie is juvenile, somewhat out-of control, and crazy, definitely fun-loving, but it hasn?t really clicked in her head as to what she?s gotten herself into. Kate, on the other hand is a bit controlling and wants to make sure that although she, herself, cannot carry the child, it?s still her pregnancy. She gently chastises Angie about what she eats, what she does, how to behave. Kate even says to her sister (Maura Tierney) that she?s the adult of the pair. Nice parallel, huh? In any light, you can tell that she means well.
Oh, but not all is perfect in their world! We?ve got a few twists and turns. Kate meets the charming proprietor of a juice bar (Greg Kinnear) while fishing for info about the neighborhood where the company is considering building a new location of the store. Something may be developing there! Angie takes Kate out for a night of clubbing since she thinks she needs to unleash her long-repressed wild side. To top all this off, but not happily, Angie?s hiding a secret from Kate, which could jeopardize the whole arrangement and shatter Kate?s dream of motherhood.
Unfortunately, despite the chuckles and guffaws (as well as chatter) amongst the good-sized crowd in the theater, I didn?t find it to be all that humorous. As many of us dread, the funniest moments of the film were given away in the trailer. It?s a shame, although the line about using the Pam cooking spray was my personal favorite. Still, that wasn?t enough.
I expected more, considering the strong comedic background of the cast. This was loaded with mostly corny, light-hearted humor, and the majority of the jokes weren?t up my alley. As I replayed the film in my head, I figured out why it fell so flat in my eyes. Tina Fey did not participate in writing the script!
While I admit that I did like the characters (standouts include Steve Martin as Fey?s ponytailed New Age boss), my disappointment couldn?t be ignored. I think the ladies should take those impeccable comedic writing and acting abilities and give it another shot, in a project that will permit them to have more creative and script input. However, we all know that this film?s mission was to give everyone a laugh, and if that?s all that you want, this film is ripe for the picking.
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