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Oh, Now I Understand! They Left Out the Dying Girlfriend Twist!

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Trailers | August 18, 2010 |

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Trailers | August 18, 2010 |

Love and Other Drugs is the sort of movie that epitomizes being able to go either way. Dustin posted the first trailer on Monday. Allow me to refresh your memory with regard to the plot summary:

Maggie (Hathaway) is an alluring free spirit who won’t let anyone - or anything - tie her down. But she meets her match in Jamie (Gyllenhaal), whose relentless and nearly infallible charm serve him well with the ladies and in the cutthroat world of pharmaceutical sales. Maggie and Jamie’s evolving relationship takes them both by surprise, as they find themselves under the influence of the ultimate drug: love.

Yuck. That summary sounds like script #14 fresh from the generic light romantic comedy factory. But tell me you wouldn’t see that if it headlined George Clooney and Vera Farminga. When he’s not in Persia and she’s not brideswarring, Gyllenhaal and Hathaway are two of the more genuinely likable and competent actors working, but neither quite has the cache yet to automatically turn something like this into transcendent material. And the viagra angle … that’s either a lousy joke that will be beaten into the ground, or a brilliant hook, but it doesn’t feel like something that will manage to land anywhere between the two extremes.

The first trailer was fairly unremarkable, and while the second trailer rehashes much of the first, there’s a couple of moments in this trailer that indicate why Love & Other Drugs is getting a big holiday release.

Here’s the new trailer:

Oh, of course she’s dying! That’s right there in the fine print of script #14. It explains a lot, though. Why these two would sign on to the script, why it would get a holiday release, It’s a tearjerker. Nothing says Christmas like watching your your girlfriend croak.

The funny thing is, the movie is based on Hard Sell: The Evolution of a Viagra Salesman by Jamie Reidy, which is a memoir about a drug rep and his experiences. Best I can tell, there’s no dying girlfriend in the book. The Anne Hathaway was just tacked on. You know: For the weeps. You know, the supplement to script #14: Generic light romantic comedy with an abrupt dead girlfriend twist.

Steven Lloyd Wilson is the sci-fi and history editor. You can email him here or follow him on Twitter.

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