The thing I remember most about ‘Leap Year’ starring Amy Adams was getting there. I got a nasty piece of dust in my eye and had to pull over the car and do a bit of contact wrangling so I could see clearly enough to drive to the theater. Now, don’t get me wrong…I didn’t hate the movie, I just though it was merely adequate. I’m not saying this because I hate chick flicks either. Give me a ‘Mean Girls’, ‘Clueless’ or ‘Notting Hill’ any day of the week and I would prefer them to most movies. It’s just that this romantic comedy never showed any, well, comedy.
I have to admit that I love Amy Adams. She was completely adorable in ‘Enchanted’ and the only thing that saved ‘Night at the Museum 2’ with her spitfire portrayal of Amelia Earhart. But one thing that ‘Julie and Julia’ showed and this film proves is that she can’t play anal and bwitchy, she’s just too cute and good-natured. As an uptight apartment stager Anna from Boston, I didn’t buy it for a second, which kind of ruins the whole story about a girl learning to let her hair down. Her love interest played by Matthew Goode does so well at playing an exasperated grouch that you never really believe any type of fondness can come from him, which unfortunately messes up their chemistry.
That being said, most of the films problems don’t lie with the actors. A major issue was the pacing of this film. There are many potentially funny and awkward situations that could be played for screwball comedy or pratfalls, but end up loosing their momentum because of the slow scene. Speeding up the editing and word exchange between the two main characters would have led to funnier surprises and smart, crackling dialogue. The dismal Disney channel like sound effects and score were distracting and the predictable plot left nothing to chance.
Not everything was bad. On the contrary, most of the movie gives you exactly what the previews show. John Lithgow was a breath of fresh air as Anna’s father, too bad he only had about 6 lines. The locations and cinematography were incredible and even used some original ideas like a midnight conversation done completely in silhouette in front of moonbeams reflecting off a lake. In the end however, this movie ranks slightly below average and didn’t have enough spark, speed, or originality to make it worthwhile for a movie theater. As my mom put it, its for people who like 'no-brainer romantic comedies'.
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