Ghosts of Girlfriends Past
Maybe it’s because it followed the gigantic (but not unexpected) letdown of Terminator Salvation, but I enjoyed this movie a lot more than the bad reviews led me to believe I would. Goes to show you; don’t put too much credence in reviews, especially of romantic comedies. There were those who liked Zack and Miri Make a Porno and then thought this movie was vulgar …
The plot is simple, just a variation of “A Christmas Carol,” surely one of the best-known stories in the English language. Instead of a being a miser, Matthew McC (and here’s a guy who should shorten his name; I can’t spell it) is a man who is too generous … with his cock, as the girlfriend says in All That Jazz. There’s no sin in being uninterested in marriage, and no real sin—in my estimation—in having serial girlfriends, so long as you treat everyone decently. But this loathsome prick breaks up with three girlfriends at once, in a conference call, on split-screen video on his computer. Saves time, he reasons, since he was going to say the same thing to all of them. He is so good at getting women that he does this while his soon-to-be new girlfriend is watching, that’s how confident he is.
His little brother is getting married, and he attends the wedding. Maid of honor is the girl he fell in love with, but lost, when he was a child … and of course you know what will happen at the end between the two of them. The ghost of his uncle, the man who taught him how to be a loathsome prick in the first place, visits him and … you know … three ghosts … look what a prick you were … look what a prick you are, what people say about you when you’re not around … look what a dead prick you will become! Lawsy mercy, I has seen de light, I’ll be a good boy now. And God bless us, every one!
I enjoyed the middle of the film. But like a better Dickens take-off, Scrooged!, this one can’t pull off the sappy ending. For one thing, he’s not old, like Scrooge, so it doesn’t have as much impact. One variant that might have worked better is if, instead of seeing his own bleak funeral, he were to see himself as an old man, friendless and ugly, incontinent, farting and drooling, because the thing that would terrify a pretty-boy womanizer like him much more than death would be the loss of his looks.
And I really missed Bob Cratchit and Tiny Tim.