Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Friends with Kids

Director Jennifer Westfeldt casts herself as the lead in her new picture "Friends with Kids," about a girl and her platonic best friend (Adam Scott), who decide to forgo the boyfriend-girlfriend, marriage-divorce thing and cut straight to having a baby together. It's the sort of New York romcom where all the young people have good jobs and lots of square feet, but we never see them at work. Much of the picture is devoted to their friends' reactions to their iconoclastic lifestyle choice, with the friends played by the cast of "Bridesmaids." Kristen Wiig is massively underused in an underwritten part, but manages to get a huge laugh out of something as small as the way she pours one glass of half-drunk wine into another. The breakout star is Chris O'Dowd, the dishy cop from "Bridesmaids," who shows real comic flair, saying just enough crude-but-real guy stuff perpetually to exasperate his wife (Maya Rudolph). Scott makes an appealing, if lightweight, co-star, but Westfeldt lacks screen presence: she's vaguely sweet, a little mousy, a little whiny. The movie has more laughs than most of its ilk - at times recalling Alan Cumming's and Jennifer Jason Leigh's "The Anniversary Party" - but falls prey to the gratuitous vulgarity and verbal diarrhea that have become pandemic.

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