out of 4
All-Reviews.com Movie/Video Review
Along Came Polly
Review by Susan Granger
2 stars out of 4
If there were ever any doubts about the bankability of Jennifer Aniston,
whose "Friends" TV series is winding to a close after ten seasons, the opening
weekend numbers on this dud of a comedy indicate how her 'girl-next-door'
popularity can beckon patrons to the box-office.
Ben Stiller stars as Reuben Feffer, a phobia-ridden risk assessor for an
insurance company. When his bride (Debra Messing of TV's "Will & Grace") jilts
him for a buff French scuba-diving instructor (Hank Azaria) on their honeymoon
in St. Barts, he returns to New York to moan and mope. Trying to cheer him up,
his ex-movie-star buddy (Philip Seymour Hoffman) persuades him to attend an art
exhibit opening, where he meets spontaneous, free-spirited Polly Prince
(Jennifer Aniston), who's works part-time on a catering crew. Actually, they
knew each other back in the seventh grade. So could romance bloom between these
Writer/director John Hamburg - with screenplay credits for "Meet the
Parents" and "Zoolander" - obviously specializes in "embarrassing situational"
comedy. Only this time, he has assembled what amounts to a tiresome gag reel -
and, while it's crude, it's not convincing. Except for Rudolpho, Polly's nearly
blind ferret. Otherwise, Hamburg ineptly flounders into Farrelly fun-flick
"American Pie" territory. Playing a nerdy neurotic who is humiliated by
bathroom humor is nothing new for Ben Stiller; it's his specialty. As for
Jennifer Aniston, her comic timing is impeccable. With Bryan Brown and Alec
Baldwin lending support, it's just a shame they have nothing fresh and funny to
work with. On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Along Came Polly" is flimsy,
formulaic 5. It's amiable if not ambitious. But the draw here is Jennifer
Copyright © 2004 Susan Granger
Buy movie posters!