Paint by number

What's Your Number?
A; Comedy
Dir: Mark Mylod
Cast: Anna Faris, Chris Evans, Ari Graynor, Blythe Danner, Joel McHale
Rating: *  1/2 (out of 5)

Someone needs to get Hollywood to stop making these cookie-cutter sex comedies with obligatory 'aww' endings. While they're at it, perhaps they could have a word with Anna Faris and get her to fire her agent. Faris is one of the finest comic actresses of this generation (she was arguably the best until a certain Emma Stone came along and beat her at her own game), which is why it is heartbreaking to see her in a movie as bad as What's Your Number?

How bad is this movie? Well, suffice to say that if you've watched the trailer, you've basically watched the whole movie. Every half decent joke is in there, making What's Your Number? a viewing experience akin to watching a two and a half minute trailer that has been expanded into a feature length film.
Faris plays Ally Darling, a 30-something marketing executive, who decides that she needs to get hitched after she loses her job, especially since her younger sister Daisy (Graynor) is already engaged. However, after reading a Marie Claire magazine article that claims that women who've had more than 20 sexual partners have extremely low chances of finding a husband, Ally (who has already been with 20 lovers) resolves not to sleep with any new men. She has a better idea: Revisiting her old exes to see if anyone's turned out better.

This, I kid you not, is the brain-dead premise of this movie that tries way too hard to make the audience laugh, succeeding only occasionally thanks solely to Faris' excellent comic timing. More annoying are the paint-by-number plot points in this script. Of course Ally needs the help of a a friend, which brings hunky playboy neighbour Colin (Evans) into the equation. Of course Ally sees him only as a friend at first, until that inevitable breaking point when both realise they're 'perfect' for each other. Of course he's a struggling musician (and a really bad one, by the way) who helps Ally figure out what she wants from life.

This movie takes over an hour to make points that are clear to the audience right from the start. Meanwhile, we're treated to a slew of tired jokes, gender stereotypes and recycled every-rom-com-ever moments. Also, I never thought I'd say this, but there is a little too much gratuitous nudity in this film (mostly Evans), and it almost seems like a ploy to keep the audience entertained because the writers had run out of ideas.

There have already been far too many similarly sub-standard films this year and I've been unfortunate enough to watch them all. I really need to do something about my number.

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