Because you liked Katherine Heigl in Knocked Up, and forgive her for The Ugly Truth. Because you think Ashton Kutcher is hawt. Because you’re a sucker for Catherine O’Hara doing one of her funny drinking characters, or Tom Selleck being ironically Sellecky in a mustache role. Because you’re in the mood to enjoy a crappy action rom-com in air-conditioned multiplex comfort on a hot early-summer’s night. I’m probably missing a few more reasons why you might want to blow $$ on a ticket to Killers; anyhow, I realize that multiplexes exist to enable impulsiveness.
This particular crappy action rom-com (or CARC), opening on more than 2,800 screens today and probably gone in two weeks, stars Heigl as Jen, a suburban wife who doesn’t know that her hubby, Spencer — that would be Kutcher — is a professional spy and killer. (He says he’s retired, but you know how it goes, you can take the boy away from the gun license, but you can’t take the gun out of the boy’s pants.) O’Hara and Selleck play Jen’s comically overprotective parents. Following an opening meet-cute in Nice, France, that allowed the production team to take a lovely trip and benefit from the French Tax Rebate for International Production, the movie unspools requisite scenes of bullets, mayhem, jokes about suburban culture, jokes about home pregnancy tests, and a few more jokes about boobs, spread legs, Internet porn, and other red-blooded aspects of American heterosexuality.
I could explore any one of those components further. But I prefer to go with a dissection of the wreck that is Heigl’s character, Jen. In the course of 100 minutes, Jen is presented as 1) a lonely, uptight loser (disguised by the flawless body and blonde prettiness of the star who plays her) who has been recently dumped by a man; 2) an infantilized adult woman whose parents micromanage her life; 3) a ditzy girl-woman who knows how to wear sexy lingerie but not how to own her sexuality; 4) a competent working woman (she does something corporate that requires her to wear sleek, feminine office-wear) who gets flustered when asked to make an important presentation; 5) a stereotypical girly-girl who unhelpfully screams EEEEEEEEEEE!!! when she and her husband face danger and who demands answers to her questions at really inopportune times like when the couple are being shot at; 6) a woman who’s too gullible; 7) a woman who’s impractical; 8) a female character who chews noisily on junk food in the movie world’s universal lazy symbol for unladylike behavior; 8) a woman who handles a firearm as if it were a snake; 9) a wife who requires ”managing” by her husband; and 10) a female character stapled together with every dispiriting, routinely accepted trait so popular and so soul-killing in the female characters we find in CARCs like Killers.
By all means, go and enjoy Killers, which has been directed by Robert Luketic (who previously did his star no favors in The Ugly Truth). But don’t tell me I’m making too much out of nothing, because the steady drip-drip-drip of nothings like this are killing us all. D