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The Break-Up (Widescreen Edition) (2006)

Comedy movie directed by Peyton Reed

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Women Are from Art Galleries; Men Are from Bowling Alleys

  • Oct 24, 2006
Coming off the coattails of 'Rumor Has It,' Jennifer Anniston rises to popularity in 'The Break Up,' which is well deserved because she gives a great performance. Too bad she isn't in as good a movie.

Here she plays Brooke Meyers, a Chicago art dealer. She meets Gary Grabowski (Vince Vaughn), a Chicago tour guide with a funny, spirited pitch for tourists. They meet at a hallmark Chicago place, Wrigley Field, for a Cubs' game. He sees her, falls in love, and tries to flirt with her, buying her a hot dog, while ignoring the fact she has a date. She brushes off all his one liners, but in the next scene they're living together, so his persistence has paid off. A scrapbook of scenes shows the highlights of their loving relationship. Then, as we're up to date, it all rips apart. The situation is not unlike 'The Honeymooners' with the subject matter of Bob Becker's popular play 'Defending the Caveman'. The relatives of both lovers show how the house is divided. Her family and friends are eccentric artists, and his are ruggedly, well..., Grabowskis. For anyone from Chicago know, it's about tailgating, beer and brats, ball games, and wearing your condiments on your favorite sport's team T-shirts. The differences are accentuated when he makes an analogy about Michaelangelo finishing his "Sixteenth Chapel". After too much attention to the remote, she loses it, and after not being considerate about his slob space and den time for sports and heavy Nintendo games, he loses it. And her. Most of the movie shows how they try to win each other back. The usual hand is played: She dates other men to make him jealous; he invites the boys over, has wild women playing strip poker, and makes a lot of caveman noise. They split the condo up like Fred and Wilma in 'The Flintstones'. They're both hurt, but reconciliation isn't easy.

In 'The Honeymooners' Ralph Cramdon was a riot--in both senses of the word. When he built up to a crescendo, he delivered his funniest lines. Here we get a lot of yelling, but it's only when the swearing and shouting dies down do we get any laughs. Some of the best scenes are the tenderest, and here Jennifer Anniston shows some fine acting. She totally knows her character and goes for a great range and depth of emotion. Vince Vaughn as Gary delivers a multifaceted performance. Hardly a cardboard caveman, we see a real person behind the boy with men's Nike's. Movies are art, and art is meant to reflect and transcend real life. It delivers gourmet pizza for the former; for the latter it is comes off as stale and irritating. Too bad it isn't billed as a documentary with laughs added. As much as the story resembles a sit-com, it is given a cinematic treatment, however. Developed from story ideas by Vaughn, himself, 'The Break Up' is much like another live-in-with-strife drama-comedy, 'About Last Night' from the mid-80's with Demi Moore and Rob Lowe. Both even take place in the singles' scene of Chicago. But while this rendition is well acted, it needs a fresher script and bigger laughs. 'The Break Up' may end up reminding people more of scenes from 'That Old Feeling'. As a movie, it is realistic, but, as entertainment or enlightenment, it breaks up. Many people suffering from damaged relationships may find solace in this movie, however. For them it will be a hit--like a homerun made at Wrigley Field.

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More The Break-Up (2006) reviews
review by . December 23, 2010
There are some hilarious moments in this movie, but overall it just reminds me of watching a dysfunctional couple, which is more irritating than funny. It seems the script just finds a bunch of frivolous reasons for Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn to fight, and then lets them yell their heads off. Think of divorced parents fighting, and you'll get the idea. The Break-Up just doesn't do a good job of drawing out the humor of the situations, and instead comes across as a bit too serious.
review by . October 22, 2007
posted in Movie Hype
I only just saw this film. After all the mediocre reviews when it came to theatres...I wasn't exactly clamboring to see it. But yesterday, it presented itself and we had time to kill... And now I know why it wasn't much of a hit.    The trailers of the film promised a comedy about breaking up...and showed lots of Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughan...two performers who have a lot of goodwill stored up with the public. YIKES! They used much of it up on this flick. Anyway, all the …
review by . December 11, 2006
Although Vince Vaughn and Jon Favreau again team up for some of the comedic scenes, this movie is not a complete disappointment. If you like VV you may enjoy the first hour of this film; after that it descends into predictability, strained comedy, and gay stereotypes from the 80's.    Vaughn gets sole credit for adding any substance to this film. And I do mean ANY. Vincent D'Onofrio, a good actor, is wasted in an inscrutable part, a deranged older sibling who runs the tourism …
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John L. Peterson ()
Ranked #100
I am a substitute teacher who enjoysonline reviewing. Skiing is my favorite pastime; weight training and health are my obsessions;and music and movies feed my psyche. Books are a treasure and a pleasure … more
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The combined star power of Vince Vaughn (Wedding Crashers,Swingers) and Jennifer Aniston (Bruce Almighty,The Good Girl) makesThe Break-Upa high-profile romantic comedy. Gary (Vaughn) and Brooke (Aniston) find that their brittle relationship may have reached the breaking point--but neither is willing to give up the condo they co-own. As their fighting grows increasingly bitter, neither is sure if they're fighting to get out of the relationship or to save it.The Break-Upis an odd combination of realistic scenes that capture the harsh yet human ways that lovers can hurt each other, and broad comic scenes with a more farcical edge. Both types of scenes are entertaining on their own terms--the movie is never boring--but they don't fully mesh, and as a result it's hard to engage emotionally with either Gary or Brooke. But the sterling supporting cast--including Jon Favreau (Wimbledon), Cole Hauser (The Cave), Joey Lauren Adams (Chasing Amy), John Michael Higgins (A Mighty Wind), Justin Long (Dodgeball), Jason Bateman (Arrested Development), Vincent D'Onofrio (Happy Accidents), and the ever-delirious Judy Davis (Husbands and Wives)--give every scene they're in a boost of comic energy. An uneven but enjoyable movie that may suffer from viewers having overly high expectations due to Vaughn and Aniston's celebrity.--Bret Fetzer
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Director: Peyton Reed
DVD Release Date: October 17, 2006
Runtime: 106 minutes
Studio: Universal Studios
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