February 2, 2011

The Dilemma

Filed under: comedy,My reviews — Hodgepodge @ 2:12 pm

A buddy comedy/drama starring Vince Vaughn as Ronny Valentine and Kevin James as his best friend Nick Brannen, The Dilemma centers around Ronny and his problem. The thing is, Ronny has discovered that his best friend’s wife, Geneva (played by Winona Ryder) is cheating on him with a tattooed-up miscreant, Channing Tatum. So Ronny faces a choice: to tell or not to tell.

The usual dilemma is compounded by the fact that the duo is trying to sell a “manly” electric engine prototype to a large car company. While Ronny is the business brains of their venture, Nick is the car genius who is already stressed from trying to make the working prototype to meet a strict deadline. Thus Ronny’s problem becomes even more complicated. If he tells Nick about his cheating wife, he might not finish the engine and then their venture, for which both have staked a lot of money, will be sunk.

Vince Vaughn and Kevin James in their roles as best-friends-since-college are believable. Even Jennifer Connelly as Ronny’s girlfriend Beth who sticks by Ronny throughout the issues of the film is convincing. The issue comes from Winona Ryder’s character of Geneva. The acting itself is not the issue; Ryder acts the part well. The issue comes with the script writing. It is a bit difficult to swallow Geneva’s niceties with her heartless discussions with Ronny about her affair. The climax scene especially and the character’s reactions seem a bit strange.

As for the events of the movie, they are a tad convoluted. They are events that seem a contrived caricature of even some outlandish scenes from life that could actually happen, but this is not necessarily a bad thing. It is a comedy that you go into expecting that sort of thing and with that, The Dilemma is right on the mark. The dilemma of the film is somewhat annoying at times (though I suppose, not in a “bad movie” kind of a way) when you know that Ronny should tell his friend the truth. It is aptly named as well, so kudos to that.

The highlights of the film come from the appearances of Queen Latifah and Channing Tatum. Queen Latifah’s bizarre Susan Warner added reprieve and awkward humor of a different kind to a film that is charged with awkward situations. As for Tatum, his unexpectedly emotional Zip, provided the best laughs of the film.

He is about two seconds away from crying. Again.

Overall this movie was not bad, but not good. It provided entertainment and a heart wrenching (sometimes annoying) dilemma in about two hours but this is a movie that probably would have been more enjoyable on TV, so that the $10 I paid to watch it would have gone to better use.

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