This Means War

You can almost imagine the meeting when this film was pitched: “so there’s these two agents like Bond and Bourne…BUT what would happen if they both accidentally dated the same girl?!. Imagine that!” And that’s exactly what This Means War is, but with lots of fighting and explosions thrown in too (natch).

Lauren (Reese Witherspoon) is the girl who finds herself caught between the two CIA agents (who also happen to be best friends); Tuck (Tom Hardy) and FDR (Chris Pine), after she sets up an online date with Tuck and after she has a chance encounter with FDR. When the guys find out, they decide not to tell her and carry on dating her at the same time to give her a chance to see who she prefers…and the macho competing begins. Them being highly trained CIA types means they have a lot of access to stuff other guys wouldn’t normally have though. So forget your Facebook stalking: what about bugging your house?

Ludicrous plot. Directed by the guy with only three letters in his name; McG (presumably coz the guy who creates fast, furious action films thinks his real name takes too long to say). But, surprisingly, I actually really enjoyed This Means War. Ya know, as a guilty pleasure sort of film.

Ok, so it’s not going to win any Oscars or anything. But it’s got quite a good few funny gags in it. Reese Witherspoon is actually a bit of a disappointment in it and isn’t her usual funny self that we’ve seen in the likes of Election and Legally Blonde. But Tom Hardy and Chris Pine are hilarious and their chemistry really works. They are the ones that keep the film interesting throughout and keep you watching (not that I’m biased or anything…). Although the brilliant Chelsea Handler as Lauren’s friend Trish is great too and steals every scene she’s in with Witherspoon, which is one of the reasons Witherspoon seems so eclipsed by everything going on.

And one great thing about it is that for once it doesn’t feel like a normal sort of soppy rom-com film that ends up talking down to women and showing them in a bad light. The woman here is having her cake and eating it for once and not being judged, which is very rare in ANY sort of film. In fact it doesn’t feel soppy at all, mostly coz round the corner there will be another fist fight between the guys and some baddies or maybe an explosion or a gun going off. And the action scenes are good too, although we already knew McG could direct action films like this after he directed Charlie’s Angels and Terminator Salvation.

In fact, This Means War isn’t really a rom-com, nor is it a straight-up action or a comedy film. It’s some sort of bizarre hybrid of all these plus more, which is another reason why it’s so interesting and appealing. So for a little fun Friday night film, you’d do worse than to check out This Means War and have a few laughs.

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~ by square-eyed-geek on March 28, 2012.

One Response to “This Means War”

  1. But, surprisingly, I actually really enjoyed This Means War. Ya know, as a guilty pleasure sort of film. Same. And part of me wishes Tom Hardy would do more of this guilty pleasure stuff. I love his good movies, and he’s a great actor, but god, this was just so much fun to see.

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