A woman, unknowingly, uses the sperm of a friend to get pregnant… is what was read on the info summary for the movie starring Jennifer Aniston and Jason Bateman that came out early last year. Against what every movie buff hopes for, the film fell short of its potential. The idea was at the very least intriguing, with the unknowingly thrown in. A woman knows what goes where always, so naturally one wants to find out how she didn’t know. It was puzzling at the end of that hour and a half, what went wrong, where did they miss it?
Acting wasn’t the issue, not with the starring roles; both Aniston and Bateman have done multiple films, and played multiple characters well. The dialogue moved the story along, and had a bit of humor at times. The setting was one that nearly guarantees success; New York City, a story in itself. There was even the clever break of Bateman’s narration as the movie progressed; it was both thought provoking and ultimately full-circle. Was it to plot driven? The focus was off, to much time was spent on sperm donor candidate Roland (Patrick Wilson’s character) and his uneventful life, even the factor of a divorce didn’t spark much for viewers. Perhaps the characters weren’t cared about like an audience should care. Leonard (played by Goldblum) Wally’s friend/work associate didn’t keep much attention, but as a sub-character he didn’t need to, the same with Kassie’s quirky sister Debbie (Juliette Lewis) who was more of a distraction than a character who meshed. The thing is though; they all seemed to be sub-characters. The coined rule that simply states “stuff happens to people you care about” apparently was not on the mind of screenplay writer Allan Loeb. That’s how we like our stories isn’t it? We invest in these people, because we want to relate. may have dropped the ball there. Maybe if Kassie (eager mother, played by Aniston) and Wally (best friend, played by Bateman) brought out something more than just a surface preview of a long friendship, things could’ve gone deeper. Where was the back story, the memories, what makes these people, people? All things to tell a good tale were present, it just missed the mark. The movie constantly brought the hope that things will pick up, and being one of those who needs to watch a movie from beginning to end no matter what, that unfortunately did not come true.
The rating of two and a half stars given by those mystical, unfailingly accurate movie-raters was right yet again, less than three just isn’t worth it. When it comes to stars, half means a whole lot. The relationship between Wally and Sebastian had several endearing moments; the duo’s compassion for each other was palpable. The audience wants to feel what is being seen. The same characters starting on a father and son basis may have been more interesting. Of course six year old Sebastian (Thomas Robinson) was an easy win-over with his boyish charm and unique personality, none the less the two had a visible bond.
The verdict; great potential as far as actors, and setting but the storyline needs work. It was fast-pace, so fast it sped over the importance of things. The Switch is a good movie, good enough for two and a half stars and good enough if nothing else is on.