Who’s In It: Jennifer Aniston, Gerard Butler, Christine Baranski, Peter Greene, Jeff Garlin, Dorian Missick, Jason Sudeikis
The Basics: A former cop turned bounty hunter (Gerard Butler) exacts gleeful revenge on his reporter ex-wife (Jennifer Aniston) when she fails to show up for court while following a hot lead. Both still struggle with the issues that caused the demise of their relationship (he never bought her flowers; she never said “I love you”), but their biggest problem -- and ours -- is that they’re both kinda-sorta still in love-hate with each other. And so, over the course of an excruciatingly long 110 minutes, Aniston and Butler bicker, flirt, taser and handcuff each other to bedposts and car doors, bicker some more, drive golf carts into ponds, bicker, and somehow end up investigating a possible police corruption case with ties to a punk-Goth tattoo parlor in Queens. Yeah, it’s that kind of movie.
What’s The Deal: Chances are, if you’re even remotely interested in seeing The Bounty Hunter because it stars Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler and you love them together because US Weekly tells you to, you might actually enjoy this aggressively mediocre work of alleged romantic comedy. But that’s where the joke’s on you, because this is neither romantic nor anywhere remotely near funny, unless you enjoy seeing characters who definitely should not be married talk about how much they hate each other. Worse, they do it all while suffering through a series of silly movie plot points (the Atlantic City road trip, the romantic night gone wrong, the run-ins with bookies collecting on a gambling debt), which means you suffer, too. When all is said and done, the film actually makes a much stronger case for Aniston and Butler to be divorced than it does for them to get back together. But alas, you already know how this one’s going to end up: a happy ending for them, and a painful few hours for the rest of us.
Biggest Leap Of Fantasy: Jennifer Aniston, as The Most Glam Investigative Newspaper Reporter of All Time, chases down leads and runs through racetracks and Atlantic City casinos and golf courses all while wearing the same pair of six-inch heels. Even more far-fetched: she does it all wearing the same designer outfit. FOR LIKE THREE DAYS STRAIGHT! As if.
Funny People Wasted On The Sidelines: Saturday Night Live
’s Jason Sudeikis, who does his best to make The Bounty Hunter
funny as Aniston’s comically smitten coworker, Stewart. Carol Kane, who shows up all too briefly as the adorably kooky co-owner of a bed-and-breakfast. Christine Baranski, who has more chemistry with Gerard Butler as his Atlantic City cougar showgirl mother-in-law than Aniston ever does.
Blink And You’ll Miss: Cathy Moriarty. The onetime Raging Bull starlet comes out of career hibernation for the first time in years just to take a throwaway role as Irene the Atlantic City Bookie in The Bounty Hunter? Sure, it’s amusing to see her order a guy to break someone’s legs. But seriously, Cathy. The Bounty Hunter??