There are so many romantic comedies, with so many obvious conclusions, that it is midly interesting to watch Something Borrowed – though not because it reinvents the formula. No, it’s fascinating because it seems that the further this formula mutates, the less pleasant it makes its leads to somehow gin up a reason why two people who love each other aren’t having sex. Ginnfer Goodwin and Kate Hudson play old friends, with Hudson on the verge of marrying Colin Egglesfield – only for Goodwin to finally reveal her feelings for Egglesfield. Uh oh. Our review of Something Borrowed on Blu-ray follows after the jump.
Rachel (Goodwin) and Darcy (Hudson) have been friends since childhood. Darcy is the alpha of the two, always aggrandizing herself and putting herself out there, while Rachel is mousy. Rachel went to law school with Dex (Egglesfield), and though the two had chemistry there, Rachel never did anything about it. When Darcy meets Dex, she grabs hold and six years later they’re engaged and about to be married. Ethan (John Krasinski) is Rachel’s best friend and sees how bad this can go, but is powerless to stop anything – he’s also known both women since childhood. And when Rachel and Dex get a moment alone together, they end up having sex.
Movies partly take place in media res, so sometimes the mechanics are less obvious at the time then if you think about the movie. The set up is what it takes to have the movie, so often that’s easy to forgive or not notice, and so many films rest upon audiences believing nonsense, whether it’s a genetically engineered spider, or what have you. The premise of Something Borrowed falls apart quickly when you think about it. You’ve got a guy who the main character is desperately in love with, but has never done anything about it over six years, and a guy who never actually expresses his inner feelings about it. I guess that’s not too hard if you misread signs, but the period to which it takes them to finally express how they feel is weird as are the relationships as a whole. Darcy is loud and somewhat obnoxious, and browbeats her best friend into submission. This isn’t all that strange, but gives you a bunch of characters that are meant to be empathetic that all have a touch of guilt attached to their actions. Why did everyone live a lie for six years?
Ultimately the underlining element is that Darcy wants what Rachel can’t reach for herself, Rachel sticks around because she can’t admit how she feels about most things and the Dex feels rejected by Rachel, so he starts dating her best friend. I guess if the film didn’t verge on marriage that might be good for a couple of weeks after – and if only the movie had been in that time span. But it’s based on a popular book, so there’s that.
What may be most appealing about the film is that Kate Hudson finally plays the non-lead, and an unlikeable one at that. Her character isn’t the mousy one, she’s kind of a bitch, and that’s fun in that Hudson as an on screen presence has been vanilla almost exclusively since Almost Famous. But that’s not enough, and Goodwin is a very boring leading character. And the supporting cast is rounded out by Krasinski and Steve Howey. Howey plays an agro douchebag who keeps popping up. It’d be a fun role with the right actor, and though he’s actively annoying, it’s never in a fun way. Egglesfield is so bland that the two women are fighting over him is borderline unbelievable. The film doesn’t work, and even if you like John Krasinski it’s hard to understand how his role was conceived.
Warner Brother presents the film on Blu-ray with a DVD and digital copy. Nice. The film in in widescreen (1.78:1) and in DTS-HD 5.1 Surround. Extras include five featurettes on the film, the book and the making of (20 min.), four deleted scenes (8 min.) and a gag reel (6 min.). The supplements are dull, in keeping with the film.