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He's Just Not That Into You is a 2009 Romantic Comedy Based on an Advice Book. It stars Ben Affleck, Jennifer Aniston, Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Connelly, Kevin Connolly, Bradley Cooper, Ginnifer Goodwin, Scarlett Johansson and Justin Long (among others). The movie is different from your typical romantic comedy in that it features not one, but four storylines going on at the same time, with snippets of people on the streets giving relationship advice on various topics.
The film is set in Baltimore and consists of these four story-lines:
- Gigi is a hyperactive girl who's desperately seeking a boyfriend. After trying and failing with numerous guys, she meets Alex, who knows the ins and outs of relationships, and helps Gigi see through the charades of the various men she meets. Little does he realize that he's falling for her in the process.
- Janine and Ben are married after a rather long relationship. Janine is thrilled, but Ben feels that he is trapped and longs for the freedom he felt before marriage. One night he meets Anna at a grocery store, and what begins as a work relationship ends up becoming an affair.
- Connor is a real estate agent with a crush on Anna. They are implied to have a former 'Friends with Benefits' relationship. The problem is that Anna doesn't want to be with him, so she sees Ben as a way out. Meanwhile, Anna's friend Mary works in ad sales for a newspaper, and helps Connor get advertisements for his company put into the paper. Mary is also seeking a boyfriend, and she feels that Connor could be the one.
- Ben's best friend Neil has been living with his girlfriend Beth for nine years, and she wants him to pop the question. The problem is that Neil is afraid of marriage, and he feels that he's loyal enough, and their relationship is serious enough that he doesn't need to be married. In frustration, Beth leaves for her sister's wedding, where she sees that married life isn't all it's cracked up to be.
The film did well financially, and is considered one of the better films in its genre.
This film contains examples of:
- Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder: Inverted as Neil didn't want to marry Beth but after she was gone he was there for her
- Also inverted with Alex who wasn't himself after Gigi left him.
- All Gays Are Promiscuous: Two gay men explain the art of hooking up in the homosexual world. If you can hold their stare for 3 seconds, it's on.
- Alternative Foreign Theme Song: "Girlfriend" by Crystal Kay, featuring Boa, is the theme song for the Japanese dub.
- Anguished Declaration of Love: Alex.
- Based on an Advice Book
- Berserk Button: Janine doesn't really mind Ben having an affair with Anna. She does mind smoking because she lost her dad to lung cancer - Ben assures her he doesn't smoke, but when she finds a pack of what Harlan Ellison called "cancersticks" in his jacket...
- She most certainly does mind the affair, she just convinces herself otherwise because she doesn't want to lose him (and blames herself, given their Sexless Marriage). Finding the cigarettes just drives home how much he's been lying to her and makes her let loose her repressed anger about his cheating.
- Betty and Veronica: Ben (Archie), Anna (Veronica) and Janine (Betty).
- Conor (Archie), Mary (Betty) and Anna (Veronica).
- Broken Aesop: Beth wants Neil to marry her but he doesn't believe in marriage, and she breaks up with him as a result. Beth soon realizes what she's lost and asks Neil to take her back. It appears the aesop is that that marriage doesn't automatically make you happy or more committed than a devoted couple. And in the end a woman can find happiness without it. However, Neil then asks Beth to marry him anyways. Apparently, a woman can't be complete without marriage after all and that men will always marry a woman if they love her.
- Or that the guy has to bend over backwards to keep a girl who doesn't share the same aspirations as him. Very rarely does this actually work.
- Or the general idea they both sacrifice their dreams for their significant other. For better or worst.
- Cringe Comedy
- Last-Minute Hookup: Mary and Conor could fit in this category.
- Looking for Love In All the Wrong Places: We're talking to you, Gigi. And let's not forget Anna... hooking up with a married man.
- Love Dodecahedron: Janine, Ben, Anna, Conner, and Mary are all connected romantically.
- Married At Sea: Beth and Neil.
- Mars and Venus Gender Contrast: All over the place.
- Monochrome Casting: The movie is set in Baltimore, and nary a black person in sight.
- Ms. Fanservice: Scarlett Johansson. Can you say "throwing a bone to guys taken to this by their girlfriends"?
- Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: In the end, Alex and Gigi.
- Not a Date: Gigi fully ignored the signs that Alex is not into her, and acts as a co-host at his party. But it does work out in the end for her, considering that she was supposed to be "The Rule".
- "Shut Up" Kiss: Alex does this to Gigi.
- Your Cheating Heart: Ben.