Stuck In Love (2 stars)

Stuck In Love

A predictable and pretentious look at romance starring Greg Kinnear and Jennifer Connelly

The debut feature from writer-director Josh Boone, Stuck In Love is a predictable and pretentious look at romance. Focusing on the trials and tribulations of a family of writers, it boasts a decent cast but too often falls for the same plot contrivances that its own principal characters would be quick to dismiss as 'lame'.

Heading up the family is Bill Borgens (Greg Kinnear), a veteran novelist who has resorted to spying on his ex-wife (Jennifer Connelly) and each Thanksgiving leaves a place at the table for her in the hope that she'll return. His eldest daughter is Samantha (Lily Collins), a college student who has just published her first work, who doesn’t believe in romance and who balks at the idea of becoming involved with classmate Lou (Logan Lerman). Meanwhile youngest son Rusty (Nat Wolff), also an aspiring writer, is struggling to find his voice and is encouraged by Dad to put himself out there and start dating the girl of his dreams (Liana Liberato), even though she is dealing with addiction issues of her own.

Boone’s film attempts to mix moments of high drama with wry comedic observations but comes up short on both fronts, largely because his story-telling sticks so rigidly to formula that you can pretty much guess from the start where each story is heading. This might have worked out better had the characters been more likeable but, for the most part, they are so self-obsessed and smug that you quickly lose interest in anything they have to say or suffer, especially once they start quoting literary references that will inevitably have a big part to play in the film’s sickly-sweet conclusion. This is tedious fare. Best avoided.

General release from Fri 14 Jun.

Stuck in Love (2012) Official Trailer - HD

Stuck in Love

  • 2 stars
  • 2012
  • US
  • 1h 37min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Josh Boone
  • Cast: Logan Lerman, Kristen Bell, Jennifer Connelly
  • UK release: 14 June 2013

In a family of writers, divorced novelist Bill (Kinnear) spies on ex-wife Erica (Connelly) while their daughter Samantha (Collins) and son Rusty (Wolff) have romantic problems of their own. Boone's script is rigidly formulaic, which would matter less if the characters weren't so smug and self-obsessed. Avoid.