Love Happens Is Manipulative Tripe

Jennifer Aniston rom-com strikes out with critics
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 18, 2009 2:18 PM CDT
In this film publicity image released by Universal Pictures, Aaron Eckhart, left, and Jennifer Aniston are shown in a scene from, "Love Happens."   (AP Photo/Universal Pictures, Kimberley French)
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(Newser) – If only love didn't happen. Critics are lambasting Jennifer Aniston's new rom-com, Love Happens—the story of a courtship between a florist and a grieving grief counselor—as predictable and manipulative:

  • It's "an inorganic soap opera," writes Michael Sragow in the Baltimore Sun. "Love happens here with a banality suitable for a film choked with homilies about mourners needing to shift their gaze from the rear-view mirror."

  • "The movie strokes that grief chord over and over again, playing on the emotions of anybody who's ever lost a loved one, in a way that feels claustrophobic and dishonest," writes Stephanie Zacharek in Salon. "I kept counting the minutes until I could escape its cloying, self-helpy vapors."
  • "Two hours of plodding, painfully predictable pseudo-drama interspersed with occasional dollops of comedy lite," sums up Bruce Demara in the Toronto Star.