Date NightBy Bethany Porter
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual and crude content throughout, language, some violence and a drug reference
Release Date: April 9, 2010
Runtime: 1 hour 28 minutes
Plot Synopsis: Phil and Claire Foster are a happy, if bored, couple living in suburban New Jersey. Their daily routine revolves around their kids, jobs, and a once-a-week "date night" that always plays out the same way. When Phil and Claire learn that a couple they know is splitting up because they've lost their spark by falling into a similar routine, they fear the same fate for themselves. In an effort to liven things up, they move their date night to a busy Manhattan restaurant, take another couples' reservation, and end up running from some dangerous criminals in a classic case of mistaken identity.
Sex/Nudity: Phil and Claire in bed together but clothed, a lot of kissing, one character is shirtless the entire movie, a minor character appears wearing only a man's shirt, scenes that take place in a strip club show several women in lingerie, talk of sexual fantasies
Violence/Gore: Several shooting scenes with no blood, Phil Foster gets punched in the face, detailed talk of murder
Profanity: Every swear word in the spectrum, also references to penis and vagina used as slang and in name-calling, the word "whore"
Which kids will like it? This is truly an adult movie. Despite the PG-13 rating the language and themes are more suited to an R-rating. Middle school children would likely find the humor difficult to relate to due to its adult nature. High school children may find the film humorous but parents may feel some of the dialogue is inappropriate. We do not recommend this film for any child under 13 years old.
Will parents like it? Parents will appreciate the comedic timing and wit of both Steve Carell and Tiny Fey. Most adults will also relate to the very real angle that the film takes on marriage and the routines we all fall into in our relationships. Carell and Fey are very believable as a married couple and the ensemble of well-known actors in supporting roles throughout the film will keep everyone surprised and entertained.
Kaboose Review: The key to this film is to look past the slightly illogical and disjointed action plot and enjoy the gut-busting comedic talents of TV stars Steve Carell (The Office) and Tina Fey (30 Rock). These two actors, who play the unassuming suburban couple Phil and Claire Foster, carry the movie and prevent it from descending into your standard romantic-comedy territory or falling flat all together.
Perhaps director Shawn Levy (Night at the Museum) tried to take on a little too much with this brief 88-minute film which tries to be part rom-com , part action flick. Luckily for Levy, Carell and Fey have a natural chemistry and are instantly believable as a married couple, connecting with the audience right away. However, throw in about five or six bad guys, a big car chase, and countless narrow getaways by the wrongfully accused Fosters, and it becomes increasingly difficult to follow not only the action plot, but to sympathize with the Fosters as they try to fix their marriage amidst all the over-the-top confusion.
What really keeps this movie from being a failure is the cast. The film's story is not overwhelmingly original -- we've all seen an action movie wherein someone is mistaken for someone else and must outsmart the bad guys -- but what saves the film are the laugh-out-loud moments from Carell, Fey, and the all-star supporting cast (Mark Wahlberg, James Franco, Taraji P. Henson), and the likeability of the stars who make Phil and Claire seem like a real-life couple with whom you can relate. Although it's worth seeing this flick just to experience the collaboration of two of the most intelligent, witty comedians working today, if you can't make it to the theater this one will be just as good on DVD.
Directed by: Shawn Levy
Cast: Steve Carell (Phil Foster), Tina Fey (Claire Foster), Mark Wahlberg (Holbrooke), Taraji P. Henson (Detective Arroyo), Jimmi Simpson (Armstrong), Common (Collins)