The Ugly Truth
This by-the-numbers romantic comedy from director Robert Luketic (Legally Blonde, Monster in Law) pairs Katherine Heigl (Knocked Up, 27 Dresses) with alpha male Gerard Butler (300, PS I Love You) for a mindless run through of familiar genre clichés.
Heigl plays Abby, a lovelorn TV producer whose status is usurped when her bosses hire Mike (Butler), a public-access agony-uncle with a misogynist streak that hides a vulnerable, equally lovelorn man. Abby’s trying to make sparks with Colin (Eric Winter), a hunky surgeon, and Mike’s so confident that he can make her relationship fly, he bets his job that following his advice can lead to love for Abby.
It’s never hard to see where The Ugly Truth is heading, but like this summer’s comparable The Proposal, the weakness and unoriginality of the idea is just about saved by the wattage of the stars, with Heigl and Butler fitting their roles like gloves. While the romance gets by, the problem here is the cringe-worthy quality of the gags, with one routine about remote control vibrating knickers scraping the bottom of the barrel.
Heigl seems comfortable enough with the mixture of sweetness and raunch which has served her well in the past, and Butler’s boorish Mike at least gives him more to play with than the dull PS I Love You. The Ugly Truth never gets particularly ugly or truthful, but it’s a disposable time waster for incurable romantics.
(15) 92min General release from Fri 7 Aug.