rom-com that adheres to the genre but is lifted by an on form Jason Bateman.
romantic comedies never go out of fashion they do go through fads. The current
one seems to be that of the sperm donor and or surrogate, clearly normal means
of conception are not funny enough for Hollywood. The Switch falls somewhere
between a number of recent films. It
does not have the wit of Juno, nor the heart of The Kids Are Alright, but it
certainly soars high above the woeful Jennifer Lopez vehicle The Back-up Plan.
(Bateman) and Kassie (Aniston) have been best friends for
years. When Wally learns that Kassie is aiming to get pregnant through sperm
donor Roland (Wilson), he cannot get
his head round it. Finding himself drunk in a bathroom he stumbles across the
‘donation’ and swaps it for his own ‘contribution’. Waking up the following
morning, with a splitting hangover and a convenient case of amnesia, he is sad
to hear that Kassie is leaving town to raise her child. Seven years pass and
when Kassie moves back Wally cannot help but see the resemblance between
himself and her son Sebastian (Robinson).
The film unfolds with a
sit-com like mentality and there is nothing here that is original in terms of
All the characters are relatively stereotyped. Kassie is a career woman with
body-clock hang-ups while Wally is a neurotic smart-ass. Surrounding them is a
cast of fun friends who are only ever there to present a sounding board or
comedic line. While Jeff Goldblum is
fun as Wally’s friend he is under used and Juliet
Lewis, as Kassie’s friend, is clearly being cast simply due to her loud
said this it still manages to be fun and heartfelt. Directors Speck and Gordon know to keep the gimmicks to a minimum and let the script do
the talking for them. It is well paced, even though the use of time-lapse as
the seven years pass is clichéd, and never lags.
Aniston is clearly at home in this sit-com environment she is rarely asked to do
anything we have not seen from her countless times before. Robinson, as the young son, is uterus achingly cute and finds a unique
balance of being nervous while bold and happy to stand up to Bateman. In
fact the scenes which Bateman and Robinson share are easily the highlights of
the film. Here Bateman demonstrates he
is more than able to carry a comedy in the lead role rather than the supporting
comedic sidekick, we are choosing to ignore Teen Wolf Too (1987). His dry
delivery and never ending rolling eyes allow us to always be involved in the
absurdity of the story at hand.
Considering the premise
involves the swapping of seminal fluids The Switch may have easily come unstuck
(sorry) but as it is it just about flows.