Good Luck Chuck (R)

Comedy 96 September 21, 2007
By Tim Grierson
No matter how hard Hollywood tries, Dane Cook is never going to be adorable. Though he’s known for his mildly edgy standup, someone in authority has decided that Cook would be well-suited for fluffy romantic comedies, but like last fall’s Employee of the Month, Good Luck Chuck is so undistinguished that it feels like an extended screen test. Cook plays Charlie, a womanizing dentist who discovers that his exes always find their perfect mate right after dating him. He hopes to break that cycle with Cam (Jessica Alba), a klutzy nerd who works with penguins and unfailingly finds everything Charlie does delightful. Despite the R rating that allows for more nudity and swearing than your typical date flick, the directorial debut of longtime editor Mark Helfrich is the sort of offensively safe romantic comedy in which the “colorful” supporting characters talk about boobies and doobies but the angelic central couple are just two goofy mush-heads looking for real love. It’s total malarkey, of course, and it isn’t helped by Cook’s bizarre inability to act heartbroken or Alba’s ill-advised confidence in her slapstick. Still, compared with his complete discomfort at playing someone other than himself, at least her bland hotness seems genuine.
Mark Helfrich Dane Cook, Jessica Alba, Dan Fogler, Michelle Harrison, Simone Bailly, Ellia English, Carrie Fleming Josh Stolberg Mike Karz, Brian Volk-Weiss, Barry Katz Lionsgate Films

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