June 28, 2016
Home / Articles / Cinema / Movie Reviews /  Without Benefits
Love-and-Other-Drugs
Don’t be afraid. This can’t be too bad. Just picture them naked—the entire film.

Without Benefits

Love & Other Drugs can't get it up

December 1, 2010, 1:00 am
By None

By Ap Kryza

In advance of its much-buzzed release, the Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams film Blue Valentine—which has yet to secure a Santa Fe opening—was slapped with an NC-17 rating by the Motion Picture Association of America, a death sentence at the box office for a film gaining acclaim for its stark portrait of an unraveling marriage, complete with coercive cunnilingus. Williams’ Brokeback Mountain co-stars Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal probably didn’t have any trouble nabbing an R rating for their new romantic dramedy, Love & Other Drugs.


They stayed at R despite the fact that the pair start their onscreen romance with a little rough, doggy-style fuck in a public restroom, and generally thrust and undulate their way through the film. There’s even a wacky sidekick who likes to jerk off to the sex tapes the pair makes.


So in an era when sex is everywhere, how does a film about serious issues get blacklisted while a popcorn flick about fuck buddies getting mooshy feelings for one another is deemed a breezy romp? Is it because Hathaway and Gyllenhaal actually seem to be enjoying their carnal knowledge? Possibly, but my guess is it’s because Love & Other Drugs is a cookie-cutter romcom that humps every cliché in the book with the same reckless abandon with which Gyllenhaal mounts Hathaway behind a dumpster: It’s cheap, it’s emotionless, and it uses explicit sex and comedy to disguise what is essentially a chick flick wrapped in a Trojan, ribbed with bare flesh (for his pleasure) and ready to be tossed in the trash.


It’s no surprise Love & Other Drugs was perpetrated by Edward Zwick, an inexplicably acclaimed director who has spent decades taking tired ideas and repackaging them as prestige pictures (The Last Samurai, Blood Diamond).

Here, Zwick re-imagines the skeezy but charming tobacco lobbyist of Thank You for Smoking as a pharmaceutical salesman (Gyllenhaal) whose unique ability to insert his unit into almost any woman makes him the perfect guy to peddle Pfizer’s miracle drug, Viagra. 


He meets his match in the form of Hathaway’s artistic eccentric, who spends her spare time bussing senior citizens to the Canadian border for affordable prescriptions. Hathaway embodies what AV Club critic Nathan Rabin accurately dubbed the Manic Pixie Dream Girl: She’s smart, zany, artistic, listens to indie rock and manages to turn Gyllenhaal’s egocentric Lothario into a respectable man.

And she loves to casually fuck—which is compromised when Gyllenhaal wants to do weird things like have dinner with her and talk after sex.

Love & Other Drugs
Directed by Edward Zwick
With Anne Hathaway, Jake Gyllenhaal and Oliver Platt 


Dreamcatcher, Regal Stadium 14, UA DeVargas
113 min.
R

 

comments powered by Disqus
 

Morning Word: Wildfire 100 Percent Contained

Morning Word Officials are monitoring a 3-mile area near the Santa Fe watershed but say the fire that burned 7.6 acres is now out.  ... More

June 27, 2016 by Peter St. Cyr

Fire Starts in City Watershed

Major resources on tap to fight fire that began Thursday in the Santa Fe Watershed

Local News A small wildfire has ignited in the Santa Fe Municipal Watershed, just upstream of McClure Reservoir and in the wilderness portion of the watershed.  ... More

June 23, 2016 by Elizabeth Miller

Newsletters

* indicates required
Choose your newsletter(s):

@SFReporter on Instagram

 

 
Close
Close
Close