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This Means War (Blu-ray Review)

18 May, 2012 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Street 5/22/12
Box Office $54.59 million
$29.98 DVD, $39.99 Blu-ray
Rated ‘PG-13’ for sexual content including references, some violence and action, and for language.
Stars Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine, Tom Hardy, Chelsea Handler, Angela Bassett, Abigail Spencer.

Romantic comedies are typically earmarked for female audiences. So the action, flying bullets, fisticuffs and smashing cars found in chick-flick This Means War separate it from the pack in a positive way.

Director McG has pretty boys Chris Pine (Capt. Kirk in the Star Trek reboot) and Tom Hardy (Bane in upcoming The Dark Knight Rises) playing CIA agents who would appear to be gay were it not for the fact each covets a real relationship with a woman.

The movie opens with the two agents in Hong Kong on the trail of German ┼▒bervillain Heinrich (Til Schweiger) — an impressive high-rise action-sequence with requisite body count — but no bad guy.

Back home in L.A., sensitive Tuck (Hardy) is recovering from an unwanted divorce, while FDR (played by Pine, and yes, it actually stands for Franklin Delano Roosevelt) is an overly-confident player apparently tired of one-night stands. In addition to their good looks, both agents dress impeccably and live in over-the-top loft-style apartments (FDR’s features a lap pool in the ceiling) that beg for a GAO inquiry.

Being that it’s the digital age, Tuck signs up for online dating, where he meets Lauren (always chipper Reese Witherspoon), a romance-starved marketing professional. After their first meeting, Lauren heads to a local video store (who said “Make it a Blockbuster night” is dead?), where she runs into FDR, who apparently picks up single women there with his sophomoric charms.

Of course, Lauren gets her dating advice from Trish (Chelsea Handler), a middle-age BFF who is actually happily married yet delivers some the movie’s funniest lines.

Tuck and FDR soon realize they’re pursuing the same woman. They agree to let the best man win, which quickly devolves into a nonsensical Keystone Cops farce featuring espionage, high-tech surveillance gadgets and unlimited CIA resources used to spy on what the other is doing.

The Blu-ray includes several alternate endings and deleted scenes, an uncensored gag reel and commentary by McG.

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