Here’s a little movie math for you: An action romantic comedy - action - romance - comedy = The Bounty Hunter.
Gerard Butler and Jennifer Aniston co-star, respectively, as bounty hunter Milo and investigative reporter Nicole. They’re ex-spouses thrown together when she jumps bail on a minor charge to investigate a murder, and he’s assigned to bring her to justice -- a gig he’s thrilled to get because he still wants her back, even though they hate each other. Well, truth be told, “hate” implies that they have something approximating chemistry, and the pairing of Aniston and Butler meshes about as well as chocolate and ketchup. Of course, while they are on the run they mend their broken relationship, and do their best to solve the crime, all the while staying steps ahead of a homicidal tattoo-shop owner (Peter Greene) who wants Nicole dead, and a pair of brain-dead muscle men working for a gangster (Cathy Moriarty) who wants to collect an old debt from Milo.
Right from the start, director Andy Tennant amplifies the worst elements of screenwriter Sarah Thorp’s hackneyed, cliche-ridden script. After taking an interminable 15 minutes to get the plot started, Tennant crowds the film with usually reliable supporting players (Jeff Garlin, Christine Baranski, Carol Kane) and assumes that just by casting them we’ll laugh at scenes that have nothing funny in them. Instead of giggling, we sit stone-faced watching actors we like do nothing more than try not to embarrass themselves.
Thorp’s tired dialogue undermines her lead actors as well. Jennifer Aniston is a TV star. She is likable and reliable, but remarkably limited as an actress. She knows how to deliver a good line when she gets it, but when she doesn’t have good material she’s nothing but a pile of hair and mannerisms we all got very used to over the course of Friends’ decade-long run. And Gerard Butler looks great with his shirt off, but nothing more than his bland handsomeness is required of him in this movie. They are not bad actors, but the wretched script and sluggish directing bring out their worst tendencies.
This is a 90-minute movie at best, stretched out to 110 minutes with painfully unfunny tangents like Jason Sudeikis’ hapless Stewart, a co-worker with a crush on Nicole. He gets tortured by thugs -- something we’re supposed to find ceaselessly hilarious, apparently because he has a goofy moustache. That anybody read this script and said yes to make it or act in it indicates that everyone involved has either no taste, no respect for the audience, or is so far at the end of their careers that this was the best thing available.
Cast & Details See all »
- Released: 2010
- Rating: PG-13
- Review: Here’s a little movie math for you: An action romantic comedy - action - romance - comedy = The Bounty Hunter. Gerard Butler and Jennifer Aniston co-star, respectively, as bounty hunter Milo and investigative reporter Nicole. They’re ex-spouses thrown… (more)