PG for sensuality and language.
Jan. 8, 2010
Amy Adams, Matthew Goode, Adam Scott, John Lithgow, Noel O'Donovan
Leap Year: Official Web site
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By Hannah Goodwyn
- Romantic comedies are not known for their Oscar-worthy scripts or cinematic achievement, and Leap Year, doesn't help the cause. In the same vein as recent films such as 27 Dresses and New in Town, this new flick starring Amy Adams is simply a story about a man and woman who dislike each other at first, but then fall in love, with a few laughs and touching moments mixed in for good measure.
Leap Year is enjoyable and has a somewhat charming element to it; however, its predictable storyline knocks it down a few pegs on this critic's rating scale. Besides, what were the producers thinking when they decided to release it in a non-leap month during a non-leap year?
A plus for the film is that it's rated PG, a rare rating indeed as most rom-com's are rife with sexual content. That being said, Leap Year is on the cusp of being a PG-13 film. With a few questionable themes, the use of obscenities and instances where the Lord's name is taken in vain, this new film is not suitable for children to watch.
The Movie in a Minute
According to an old Irish tradition, a woman can propose marriage to her love on Leap Day. And that's exactly what Anna (Amy Adams) decides to do when her boyfriend Jeremy (Adam Scott) fails to pop the question before leaving for Dublin, Ireland, on a business trip. An apartment stager from New York, Anna is used to staying in control of her surroundings. That's exactly what she doesn't have on this journey, as she finds herself stranded in Wales just two days before February 29. Desperate to make the deadline, Anna hires a ruggedly handsome, cynical innkeeper named Declan (Matthew Goode) to get her to the city on time.
The Bad and the Good
Offensive content. Leap Year doesn't contain sexually explicit scenes like most romantic comedies nowadays. However, the obscenities and profanities used classify this movie as a not-so-friendly film for children. At the beginning of the story, Anna and her boyfriend Jeremy are in the process of buying an apartment together (not an idea most parents encourage). On top of that, Amy Adams is shown wearing just undergarments in one scene, and in the shower in another (her shadow is illuminated while she bathes). While pretending to be married in order to stay at a small bed and breakfast, Anna and Declan share the same bed. Sexual tension between the two characters is hinted, but not explored. At one point, Anna also partakes in some heavy drinking. Superstition also plays a part in Leap Year. Anna claims she doesn't believe in bad luck as her new Irish pub friends explain that the black cat that just crossed her path – among other signs – will bring her misfortune.
Script. Writers Deborah Kaplan and Harry Elfont (who did Made of Honor, Josie and the Pussycats) came up with a solid movie idea, but failed to turn it into a memorable script. As entertaining as the comedic bits and heartwarming scenes are, the movie is too predictable. Similar to other rom-com's, Leap Year has the usual awkward kiss between the two non-dating characters that reveals their budding love for each other. Although the cliff ending is visually beautiful, the dialogue comes across as a bit lacking. A nice addition to the script is the inclusion of Louis Vutton (Anna's luggage). Unacquainted with the importance of such a bag, Declan sarcastically interacts with the prized suitcase, adding to the comedy of the film.
Actors. Good chemistry between the two stars, Amy Adams (Enchanted, Doubt) and Matthew Goode (Brideshead Revisited, Chasing Liberty), makes up for the script's weaknesses. Goode plays the amused scoffer well, as does Adams as the leading lady looking for love. The supporting cast the two meet along the way to Dublin are perfect. In the role of Anna's failure of a father, John Lithgow unfortunately only graces one scene of the film.
Happily Ever After?
If you want to watch a cute chick flick -- that showcases the beauty of Ireland, with its sea-washed cliffs and roving green hills, then Leap Year is the movie ticket for you. Just keep in mind that it’s predictable romantic comedy. And parents should be aware that even though it has a PG rating some of the content is not kid-friendly.
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Hannah Goodwyn is frustrated with movie trailer producers! If you've seen the Leap Year trailer, then you have basically seen the movie -- all the good bits anyway.
Hannah is CBN.com's Family and Entertainment producer. For more articles and information, visit Hannah's bio page.
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