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Wednesday
Aug032011

Movie Review: 'The Change-Up'

Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) -- The Change-Up isn't breaking any new ground. We've seen plenty of body-switch comedies before, but where this one differs is that it's not a mother and daughter, father and son or man and woman.  It’s two adult males doing the switching: Jason Bateman's character, Dave, a successful lawyer and father of three, including infant twins; and Ryan Reynolds' Mitch, an aspiring actor -- sort of -- who sits around his house all day smoking pot waiting for his next sexual conquest.

When we first meet Dave, he's roused from a deep sleep by his crying twins. What ensues is one of several funny, if not disgusting, sight gags you'll see that revolve around the babies. Let's just say this scene ends with poop on Dave's face, a beer in his hand and the twins on his lap. It's a challenging way to spend a night when you're trying to focus on becoming a partner at a prestigious law firm.

Enter Mitch, who has to twist his lifelong friend Dave's arm to get him to spend a night at a bar watching baseball -- much to the chagrin of Dave's wife, Jamie, played by the exceptional Leslie Mann. Dave is envious of Mitch's sexual conquests, and Mitch is envious of Dave's stability. Before you know it, they're urinating in a fountain together, at which point they exclaim in unison, "I wish I had your life!" The entire city momentarily loses power, which Mitch and Dave assume is a rolling blackout but turns out to be something a lot more magical.

The next morning, our boys wake up in the other's body, desperate to get their own life back -- until they realize the situation presents a unique opportunity to do the things they don't normally get to do. For Dave, it's an opportunity to use Mitch's body to get to know the object of his married-man fantasies – in this case, Olivia Wilde, the object of many a married man's fantasies.  For Mitch it's an opportunity to sleep with Jamie -- and, perhaps, learn responsibility.

Bateman and Reynolds do a great job becoming each other. Both gifted comedic actors, we believe they've become each other. Though not every joke hits the target, when it does, The Change-Up feels as funny as some of the other quality adult comedies we've seen this summer.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars.

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