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'Friends With Kids' trailer plays around with the necessity of marriage

Just hearing the title Friends With Kids made me a little wary when my friend first sat me down to watch this trailer. A lot of comedy movies that surround pregnancy and children tend to get a little too slapstick for the sake of trying to pull a laugh out of the audience. But Friends With kids looks like it’s going to put character relationships at the forefront and let the humor naturally evolve from there. Still, I have my reservations.

Adam Scott and Jennifer Westfeldt play leads Jason and Julie, two best friends who both want kids, but don’t want to get married and subsequently divorced. After watching their married friends Ben and Missy (Jon Hamm and Kristen Wiig), the newlyweds, and Alex and Leslie (Chris O’Dowd and Maya Rudolph), a 10-year couple with children already, having trouble balancing their lives, they begin to think there might be a different way to go about everything. They decide to have sex once, have a child that they’ll both be committed to, but date other people instead once all is said and done. After having their baby, they eventually meet other love interests. Jason runs into Mary Jane (Megan Fox) at a park while Julie meets Kurt (Edward Burns).

When you put Jason and Julie up against what mainstream considers the proper relationship, monogamous, married, and closed, the cards are stacked against them, but it seems that they manage to make it work anyway. It’s just there are those few scenes at the end of the trailer that make me feel like writer, director, and co-star Jennifer Westfeldt took a great idea and dragged it back to the predicatable—which would follow the trend of Westfeldt’s previous writing in Kissing Jessica Stein. Are Jason and Julie going to realize they have romantic feelings for each other in the end? Probably. Is it what I wanted? Not so much. I would have preferred to see these two best friends come up against an entirely new set of challenges, but still manage to make their initial arrangement work.

I’m still going to see the movie anyway. The cast is smart and witty, and I think I’ll enjoy the exploration of what it means to be a family. Friends With Kids comes to theaters March 9, 2012.


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