Us Rating: **
Opens: Friday 8/20
The key to enjoying this rom-com is to view it as an offbeat Jason Bateman vehicle featuring Jennifer Aniston as his love interest, rather than the reverse. Indeed, Aniston treads on all-too-familiar ground here; there isn't an exasperated facial expression or hair flip we haven't already seen 100 times. She plays a desperately single career girl named Kassie who gets pregnant via artificial insemination. Once with child, she leaves NYC -- and her cynical best friend, Wally (Bateman) -- for the Midwest. Seven years later, Kassie returns and promptly lands in a triangle with bland sperm donor Roland (Patrick Wilson) and Wally, who can't find the courage to declare his love. We all know where this is going, right?
Also, beware of massive plot holes: Sensible Kassie just lets Roland's deposit sit in a plastic cup in her bathroom during a raucous party, and she and Wally apparently never visited or called each other during her long NYC hiatus. Unlikely! Still, Bateman's winning comic performance and his endearing rapport with Kassie's son, Sebastian -- who shares his insecurities -- give a sense of what this film could have been.
-- THELMA ADAMS