I’ve argued in the past that I believe Jennifer Aniston could be a very good actress if only she’d start taking meatier roles like she once did with The Good Girl. I really feel like the last several movies I’ve seen with her have been the same character over and over. She’s become like the Tom Cruise of female actors-a victim of her own popularity. Granted, I get that America wants to see her the same way in every movie, I understand she’s a lock for big box office, but I still don’t like it.
I’ll also admit that Vince Vaughn does the very same thing, yet it doesn’t bother me so much. Is that a double standard? Yeah, it probably is, but in my mind the main difference is that I like the fast-talking, joke-making Vince Vaughn and I don’t like the semi-whiny, always-the-victim Jennifer Aniston. (I’m talking about the characters they play, mind you, not the actual people. I have no idea what their true personalities are like.)
Anyway, let’s talk about The Break-Up. Vaughn and Aniston stick to their typecasts and play the usual. The story line is pretty simple-they meet and fall in love, buy a condo in Chicago together, break up over a lack of communication, and then the “laughs” ensue.
Notice the quotes.
The quotes are there because other than a few truly gut-busting laughs, this movie was very, very stressful to watch. Aniston and Vaughn spend much of it yelling at one another or doing things to upset the other. It really had a lot of tension, more tension than I wanted from my comedy on a Saturday night.
One thing that I love about this DVD is that to even get started you have to pick a side-are you with him, or are you with her? That’s a nice touch, because I think you can’t help but pick a side as you watch this film. Of course, my wife and I were siding with two different folks and we were having trouble convincing the other why they were wrong.
The supporting characters really made this film. Jason Bateman (always gold) was barely recognizable, and that’s what I love about him. Vaughn’s buddy Jon Favreau played Vaughn’s buddy in the film and the dynamic displayed in Swingers still exists. Aniston’s brother in the film was truly hilarious, and Vaughn’s brothers were also very amusing.
So I guess the real question is if I would recommend this film to you? Well, that depends. If you’re a Vaughn or an Aniston fan, you dig their usual style of performance, and you don’t mind top-of-the-lung yelling, I think you’ll be pleased. Otherwise, I might give this one a pass.