Plot Believability: 5/10
Ava’s neuroses err on the side of unrealistic: In real life, her family would have staged an intervention and kicked her out of their personal problems. Then again, a middle-aged couple looking for a divorce wouldn’t show up at their daughter’s office and ask her to be totally unbiased to their issues. Also, there’s a recurring bit about men never replacing the toilet roll, which has sunk to a movie cliche at this point. Find something new to complain about!
Supporting Cast: 7/10
Like I said, on paper it’s an impressive group: Seymour and James Brolin as the parents; character actor Michael Weston as Gerber; Szohr branching out from The CW; and Lutz playing a more complicated role than a meathead vampire. But with the exception of Brolin embracing Judaism during the separation — having felt like he couldn’t while married to Seymour — and becoming Ava and Charlie’s intrusive housemate, no one really rises above the sketchy outlines of his/her character.
I’m adding points, however, for the fun cameos that should have gotten more than five minutes of the movie. Alyson Hannigan and Alexis Denisof play a shallow couple ragging on each other about money and daddy issues, which is hilarious since the two have such a low-key, successful marriage. Having seen them in the trailer, I (mistakenly) expected them to either play a larger role in the movie, or to be one of many celebrity couples spoofing themselves.
Male Eye Candy: 9/10
Kellan Lutz nabs this one, especially since he’s often naked because he’s trying to convince his wife to have sex with him. Sad-eyed, blue-balled Lutz is our favorite.
Food/Real Estate Porn: 7/10
Aside from Ava’s dad asking if every single piece of food offered is kosher, there’s surprisingly little in the way of food — unlike Moore’s 2007 movie Because I Said So, where she played a chef. That said, Ava and Charlie’s house is gorgeous, and probably actually in their budgets since she’s a marriage counselor and he’s a wine consultant or somesuch. (He works in a vineyard, which is the location for several crucial scenes.)
Children, Pets, and Other Scene Stealers: 5/10
Nope on the first two, though Ava and Shelby’s dad does have a love child their age out in the world somewhere. It’s a blessing that we weren’t subjected to the big rom-com cliche of a meddling pet getting hit by a bus/attacking someone’s crotch/swallowing a pregnancy test. And as for scene stealers, Mulroney and co. wasted an opportunity to have Moore whup the others’ asses at karaoke.
Our Check List ranks movies based on ten different criteria that are each worth a total of 10 points. The scale tops out at 100. To give you a reference, a classic like Breakfast at Tiffany’s might rank at 97. Check specific categories for your main interest.