CHICAGO – “Drinking Buddies” director Joe Swanberg’s latest release of the same star wattage is “Happy Christmas,” an even lower-fi story than the Olivia Wilde beer comedy, steered even more by the casting that it was able to assemble. However, with this movie Swanberg doesn’t so much worry about having a story that could be confused with a more mainstream romantic comedy if it were to have a bigger budget.
JIM Reviews film "GHOSTS OF GIRLFRIENDS PAST" --
“GHOSTS OF GIRLFRIENDS PAST” – Ghosts aren’t the Only things “Transparent” in this! =
Rating: 7 of 10 stars.
(Per an advance preview:) MATTHEW McCONAUGHEY was very good as the agent in “Tropic Thunder” — but his work has often been weak in many of his recent starring vehicles. In this film, he “CONNECTS” more with his co-stars, & it results in a considerably improved product. He plays a famous photographer who agrees to attend the wedding of his younger brother (BRECKIN MEYER), trying to discourage him from going thru with the marriage, & chancing to actually cause a breakup with the bride-to-be. He’s visited by the ghost of his Uncle Wayne (very well played by MICHAEL DOUGLAS), who reminds him how he taught him to be a Triple-S threat with women: Slick, Smooth & Superficial. Three Ghostly girlfriends from Matt’s past (including the bride’s Maid of Honor, very effectively played by JENNIFER GARNER) work to show him how he became someone who’d worked hard to AVOID emotional attachments in his life, & the errors of his ways. The film’s not great, but a strong supporting cast (including LACEY CHABERT as the bride & ROBERT FORSTER as her father) help turn this into an enjoyably successful comedy rather than mere fluff.