Not the Family Movie It’s Marketed To Be
Release Date: February 14, 2008
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Abigail
Breslin, Elizabeth Banks, Isla
Fisher, Rachel Weisz, and
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 112 minutes
Distributor: Universal Pictures
Director: Adam Brooks
Executive Producer: Liza Chasin and Bobby Cohen
Producer: Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner
Writer: Adam Brooks
Address Comments To:Jeffrey R. Immelt, Chairman/CEO
Ron Meyer, President/COO, Universal Studios
Marc Shmuger, Chairman
David Linde, Co-Chairman
100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608-1085
Phone: (818) 777-1000
Web Page: www.universalstudios.com
On Will’s day to pick up his daughter from school, he enters to the sound of hundreds of elementary school children yelling in a panic at their parents because they just sat through their first sex education class. Will’s wide-eyed daughter Maya walks up to him and says, “We have to talk.” That evening, Maya grills Will about his past relationships and how Will and Maya’s mother originally met and fell in love. Will tells her that it is a complicated story. Maya, defiant, demands to hear the tale.
So, Will warns Maya that he will recount all of the details of his various, complicated relationships to her. However, he also says that he is going to change the names of all the people involved and that Maya is going to have to guess who her mother is in his story. Maya loves the idea of a romance-mystery, so Will takes her back to the beginning when he was just a young college kid working with the Young Democrats of America on Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign.
Will’s relationship tale weaves together the three women, Emily (Elizabeth Banks), Summer (Rachel Weisz) and April (Isla Fisher), who have all had major impact in his life. As Will lays out the story, Maya not only has to unravel the mystery of who her mother is, but also she comes to realize that “love” is more complicated than she thought.
As far as the quality of the movie, DEFINITELY, MAYBE is a very well written story with fun twists and turns as well as engaging characters, the chief of which is the adorable Abigail Breslin as Maya. The movie has several laugh-out-loud moments and some tear-jerking moments. It is, by industry standards, a great movie.
The movie is being billed and marketed as a heart-warming and family-friendly tale of the relationship between a father and his daughter. However, DEFINITELY, MAYBE is not family-friendly. The marketing campaign is deceptive and misleading, and some audience members may be upset when they realize they have been duped into seeing a liberal, anti-capitalist, politically correct diatribe that promotes a Romantic worldview. Thus, the movie shows traditional marriage in a negative light as a “capitalist consumer agenda” that is destined to fail and falls far short of the rewarding emotional “love” found in illicit relationships and hedonistic lifestyles.
The movie is also ruined by strong sexual content, including several couples that live together out of wedlock and implied fornication. There is also homosexual content where a women recounts a lesbian experience she had in college. The movie also shows the results of elementary-aged school children who are being taught sex education in the public schools. The sequence, although handled in a comedic way, still has 10-year-old children using graphic language about what they just learned in class. Also, the movie is somewhat tragic because it does illustrate how divorce destroys relationships, including the children who are torn between their parents.
All in all, DEFINITELY, MAYBE is definitely not the type of moral movie that media-wise people of faith and values would enjoy. Instead, audiences may enjoy renting other movies such as Walt Disney’s THE GAME PLAN, which is a great tale of a father and his daughter that has a much more redemptive worldview. You can find more about this movie and other family-friendly fare with a special Internet Archive subscription at www.movieguide.org
DEFINITELY, MAYBE is a well written story with fun twists and turns as well as engaging characters, the chief of which is the adorable Abigail Breslin as Maya. The movie has several laugh-out-loud moments and some tear-jerking moments, but it is not a family-friendly movie. For example, the story contains frank sexual references and advocates an immoral, politically correct Romantic worldview that attacks traditional marriage.