Lots of movies seen over the last week or so. Haven’t had a lot of time to write because moving apartments. But time for a real short review right now.

Life Or Something Like It
Director: Stephen Herek
Writers: John Scott Shepherd, Dana Stevens
Staring: Angelina Jolie, Edward Burns, Tony Shalhoub
Release Date: April 26, 2002

This movie is of its own time. Life Or Something Like It is a romantic comedy that tries to take the sexiness and charisma of Angelina Jolie and have it carry the heavy load of a rather flimsy story. The turning point moment for Lanie Kerrigan (Angelina Jolie) is when homeless prophet Jack (Tony Shalhoub) tells her that she is not going to get a job she wants, and that she is going to die in a week. Yes, that is the focal point of Life Or Something Like It.

The start of the movie spotlights how Lanie is solely focused on her career. Even her then engagement to MLB star Cal Cooper (Christian Kane) is fraught with fraud emotional involvement. She does not love him. The most visceral reactions to has to anything come when she is partnered with Pete (Edward Burns). The two do not get along only because of unresolved sexual tension and chemistry.

Alright, now comes the classic through points. Lanie is focused on the career but gets a reawakening experience from the profit that plays with her head and forces her to change her perspective. She begins to live life rather than plan it in her one week left alive, which results in her falling for Pete. Naturally, a roadblock ensues; Lanie gets a highly sought-after promotion which forces her to move to New York. But after glass shattering moment of realization for both Pete and Lanie, they end up smiling together in the end.

There are very few things that work well about Life Or Something Like It. It’s one main saving grace is the banter between Lannie and Pete during the first half of the movie when they are not romantically linked. It is classic adult (yet Kindergarten) negging where they are both too stubborn to admit what they both want and are feeling.

What sinks Life Or Something Like It is that almost none of the characters are likable when you first meet them. Lanie and Pete are both insulting, a little bit conceited and people who I would not want to be friends with. The movie progresses and tries to throw the pair rope to get themselves out of the holes the screenplay put them in, but it is not enough. By the end, for Lanie, even after the sunshine enlightening moments, there is not a lot of rebuilding there.

Also, can we touch on how the turning point of the movie comes with Lanie (someone who doesn’t care what anybody says or thinks) takes the crazy word of a homeless prophet who LEGIT predicts everything correctly. Life Or Something Like It would have been better served if it didn’t have this random prophetic aspect to it.

As a sucker for anything in the TV and broadcast field, Life Or Something Like It gets graded on a personal curve because seeing any of the inner workings is fun, even if they are not true. The most eye-opening part of the movie for yours truly was when Lanie went unscripted with her on-air idol Deborah Connors (Stockyard Channing), and the aftermath that ensues. But from strictly an overall movie experience, there is not much to go on here. It’s romantic comedy fodder that is as skippable (or snackable depending) as a late-night rerun.

STANKO RATING: C- (2.0/5 Stars)

“Life Or Something Like It” IMDB
“Life Or Something Like It” Rotten Tomatoes

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