'What's Your Number?:' What Critics Are Saying
Critics are mixed about Anna Faris' new romantic comedy What's Your Number?, which opens in theaters Friday.
The movie centers around Ally Darling (Faris), who -- shortly after getting fired -- reads an article that claims 90 percent of women who have slept with more than 20 men will never get married. She counts her number at 19, and determines not to bed another man unless they're in a serious relationship. But then she goes to the bar and wakes up with No. 20, so decides instead to revisit all her former flames to see if one is the love of her life.
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Writes Kirk Honeycutt in The Hollywood Reporter, "Anna Faris, with an assist from co-star Chris Evans, turns a formulaic rom-com into a surprisingly sweet romance.
"To paraphrase Noel Coward, it’s extraordinary how potent cheap rom-com is. None of this should play well. It does because Faris and Evans work hard to make it look easy. Faris is oft compared to Lucille Ball, but why not? She’s got the beauty, awkwardness and guile down pat. She absolutely makes this movie, which would otherwise be exasperating. Her timing is impeccable and her enthusiasm contagious," he adds.
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"Evans’ role is more subservient to the heroine and would get lost with a less personable and accomplished comic actor. He definitely plays second fiddle to Faris, but what an orchestra they make," Honeycutt continues.
David Germain of the Associated Press was not as hot on the film.
"Hollywood's new age of realistically raunchy, female-driven romantic comedies takes a step backward with What's Your Number?, a dollop of forgettable fluff that's as dull and predictable as they come," he writes in his review.
"If Kristen Wiig's Bridesmaids was a 10 and Cameron Diaz's Bad Teacher was a 6, then What's Your Number? rates a 2 or 3, straining through a similar R-rated sensibility but delivering the usual vanilla of most PG-13 romances," he adds.
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He found Faris to be a bright spot.
"As she usually does, Anna Faris comes through with a spirit and quirkiness far more engaging than the material merits, creating a character you'd like to embrace if only she wasn't forced to behave so stupidly and shallowly. But it's difficult to get caught up in what essentially is a one-note, feature-length gag about a woman's sudden fixation that she's slept around too much and that one of those former partners must have been her perfect mate," he says.
"Bad as the movie is, it's a nice showcase for Evans to display his comic charms (and rippling abs as a guy who goes shirtless an awful lot) after establishing his superhero cred in the title role of the summer hit Captain America: The First Avenger," he goes on.
Mary Pols of Time magazine writes, "Directed by Mark Mylod, What's Your Number? is not much dumber than the average romantic comedy, but there is something sad and infuriating about it — like running into a high school friend who seemed destined for greatness and walking away realizing she just picked your pocket."
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She also gives credit to Faris' comedic skills.
"Faris's timing is as good as ever, but having the gifted parodist play it straight for the most part — there's a fun bit with a fake British accent — seems like a waste of comic resources," she writes.
The Bridesmaids comparison crops up again.
"This movie has the misfortune of opening with a set piece identical to the one that opens Bridesmaids, with Ally sneaking back into bed with #19 (Zachary Quinto) after prettying herself up. There are other similarities: a wedding provides the narrative scaffolding, Ally delivers an awkward toast at her sister Daisy's (Ari Graynor) engagement party and a blue-collar guy comes to the rescue. But in each case, What's Your Number falls short in comparison; the clever truths about friendship and love that made Bridesmaids special are missing, along with any confidence that the heroine is capable of self respect," writes Pols.
"Moreover, What's Your Number? doesn't think out of the box, despite having an atypical star," says Pols. "It looks and feels like every other rom-com, with the usual mise-en-scene of artistically disheveled and absurdly enormous apartments intercut with enough urban shots to establish place, but not community; I could watch this movie in my sleep."