The Change-Up

Sometimes you just need a stupid movie to turn your brain off and laugh a little bit. With all the dark or socially motivated humor I’ve seen recently, The Change-Up is just what the doctor ordered.


The plot? It’s Freaky Friday with grown men. One is an overly ambitious lawyer with a wife and three kids, Dave Lockwood (Jason Bateman). The other is a slob, high school dropout turned actor, Mitch Planko (Ryan Reynolds). Naturally, the former wants the carefree style of a good-lookin’ dude who has sex with anything resembling a vagina, and the latter wants a life of structure…where he gets to have sex with the former’s gorgeous wife, Jamie (Leslie Mann).

There is a modicum of a heart to this film, but do you honestly care? Fine. Dave can’t enjoy life – I see a trend in films regarding lawyers. He has the family he always wanted, a job he’s earned and the scorching hot co-worker, Sabrina (Olivia Wilde). Meanwhile, Mitch can’t finish anything he starts. His role in a Lorno (light porno, a.k.a skinemax) is the only real acting job he’s gotten, and his relationship with his father (Alan Arkin) is in tatters.

As you can expect, when they switch bodies the boys go have their fun for a while until they begin to notice their own flaws and rectify errors in their new bodies (well, Mitch does; Dave relaxes for while until he misses his family). If you’re going into Change-Up expecting a life lesson you haven’t heard or jokes you’ve never met, then I pray for your lack of foresight. The jokes are crude…very crude, and the language is vulgar, but damnit if it isn’t at least a little funny to see Jason Bateman let loose for a while. He’s always so Michael Bluthian. Watching him mimic Ryan Reynolds’ role (yes, he’s only had one, ever) is actually quite entertaining.

Not to be outdone, Reynolds does his best Bateman impression and actually succeeds to a certain extent. Yet, as usual, Leslie Mann sort of steals the show. She isn’t given much time to do so, but she is simply a really funny woman. The only issue with Jamie is believability. She has been friends with Mitch and Dave since the sixth grade (maybe earlier) and she can’t notice a change in her husband, even after he tries to warn her? Shenanigans. Also, if Mitch has been incapable of getting work, how does he pay for all that weed and the stellar apartment? I digress.

The jokes are immature. The premise is inherently flawed. The acting is as expected. I laughed. I bet you will too. Don’t judge. Just embrace the idiocy and move on.

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