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Playing For Keeps: Better to Play Safe and Keep Away!

Dated : December, 7, 2012  By
  • Star Cast: Gerard Butler , Jessica Biel, Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones Dennis Quaid, Judy Greer, James Tupper, Noah Lomax

  • Director: Gabriele Muccino

  • Genre: Romantic Comedy

  • Run Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

  • Ratings: 2 Stars

Quick Take:

The movie revolves around a soccer player who has reached the verge of decline and is broken both professionally as well as in his personal life. He wishes to be back with his estranged family, however his flirtiest temperament plays spoiler to his plan. How he tries to regain his glory and win back the heart of his ex wife and son forms the gist of the film.

Playing For Keeps Review

Plot Review:

The movie begins with the entry of the main protagonist ace soccer player George (Butler). He has recently shifted base to Virginia and he wishes to reunite with his estranged family which consist of his ex wife Stacie (Biel) and son Lewis (Noah Lomax). No specific reason has been described for the split in the family. However it is shown that George has burnt out and is now lonely and pinning for the company of his near and dear ones. Albeit ex wife Stacie seems to have clearly moved on and is also contemplating remarriage. George too has been offered a job as a sports commentator for a local television channel. However he declines the offer and instead moves on to become the coach of his son's soccer team. Predictably his presence as coach works wonders for the team and they improve tremendously. The time spent coaching the kids gives George a good opportunity to rekindle the ties with his son. However the downside is that he is also bogged down by the roving eyes of the mothers of the other soccer players.

Carl (Dennis Quaid) plays the role of a immoral hustler who even resorts to bribing to make his son win. He indeed has a roving eye and jumps into every woman's bed at the drop of a hat. Ironically he is the same person who hires a detective to keep track on his wife Patti (Uma Thurman). In a strange turn of events Patti ends up in bed with coach George. The movie does a detour since George is also eye candy for other housewives who wish to indulge in a sexual fantasy with him.

How George gets caught in a whirlpool of misunderstandings and how he finally resolves all the issues makes a hilarious sequence which will make you smile if not laugh.

Playing For Keeps wallpaper

Screenplay and Direction:

The direction could have been better and the plot could have been made less predictive and stereotyped. It was the case of a typical rom com with nothing new to offer. Even the situations seemed to move on from frame to frame without serving any real purpose in the wake of the events. The story seemed to ramble off the track and take a course of itself and where no one seemed interested in it anymore.

Missing Elements:

Although the film is touted as a romantic comedy it was totally lacking in the emotional quotient. Another area where it failed to make a mark is the comedy. The jokes seemed to be forcefully fitted into the plot just to stand by its name of the genre of romantic comedy. Some of the vital elements seemed to be left unexplored and this could be one of the reasons for the downfall and the negative feedback.

Playing For Keeps wallpaper

Final Verdict:

Although the plot is predictable and the storyline which belongs to an era gone by, yet it is worth a onetime watch and nothing more.

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