Film: This Means War
Starring: Chris Pine, Tom Hardy, Reese Witherspoon, Chelsea Handler
Throughout the screening of This Means War, one of my reoccurring thoughts was “people are not this beautiful in real life…” Indeed, every single actor or actress in the film was beautiful, from the two main men and their mutual romantic interest, to every waitress, bartender and extra in the film. It was a smorgasbord of sexiness.
Apart from that strangely belittling yet thoroughly enjoyable detail, the movie was entertaining, if entirely implausible. The film is as much about the bromance of the two (incredibly sexy) main characters, FDR Forester (Chris Pine) and Tuck (Tom Hardy) as it is about the competition they establish to capture the heart of Lauren, played by the almost overwhelmingly cute Reese Witherspoon.
The movie begins in a classic Bondian type way that establishes the slickness (if not the subtleness) of FDR and Tuck. However, except for this one scene, which also introduces the ‘bad guy’ (the steely-eyed Til Schweiger as the evil Heinrich), the movie is less about spies and more about two guys using gadgets and kung-fu to gain intel about and woo the woman they have both become starry-eyed over. Witherspoon’s character is bubbly and fun but its Chelsea Handler, who plays Lauren’s best friend, who really takes the cake as the entertaining female role in the film. Having said that, it is truly amusing to watch Witherspoon’s character become bewildered by the introduction of FDR and Tuck into her otherwise sexy-man-less life.
The rest of the plot revolves around the two spies establishing a gentleman’s code to govern their competition and then both promptly breaking it. Instead, they both take Lauren on a series of wildly romantic and obnoxious dates (that any girl would be insane not to secretly long for) and literally battle each other for Lauren’s affections. Of course, Lauren has no idea the two know each other, which is revealed in a very destructive fight between the two spies that seems like it should leave both of them dead.
I’ll admit the film is hilarious, in a very B-rated rom-com meets spy movie meets bromantic comedy sort of way. The story is implausible and at times the plot drags, but I was surprised to find that it genuinely kept the audience guessing as to who Lauren would choose. The quips and back-and-forth between Pine and Hardy make up a good deal of the most hilarious scenes, as does any moment Chelsea Handler is on the screen. Her lines nearly had me rolling on the floor with laughter (but I didn’t because I didn’t want to miss a single moment of pure sexiness on the screen).