Seeing Other People

Ed and Alice really love each other. They've been together for five years, and seem to complement each other perfectly in every way. Their little idyllic existence changes when Alice (Julianne Nicholson, Speakeasy, Tully) and her sister Claire (Lauren Graham, Bad Santa, Sweet November) secretly watch a couple go at it during Alice's engagement party. Alice is pretty inexperienced in bed, and the fact that she will be with Ed (Jay Mohr, Simone, The Adventures of Pluto Nash) forever seems daunting. She does not feel like she ever had the chance to go crazy and sleep with anybody she wanted to. She proposes to Ed that they see other people. Ed is aghast, but Alice is confident that their love for each other is stronger than lust, and they can easily survive and even benefit from this experiment.

Morality aside, Seeing Other People is a dumb movie. It's the type of comedy that tries to derive its humor from lots and lots of dialogue, but nothing about it is funny. Director Wally Wodorsky (Sorority Boys), co-wrote the screenplay with his wife Maya Forbes. The two have some impressive television writing credentials (including The Simpsons and The Larry Sanders Show) but their screenplay scrapes the bottom. Alice quickly meets Donald (Matthew Davis, Blue Crush, Legally Blonde) and instead of going nuts sexually, enters a semi-relationship. Ed is reluctant to do anything, but soon starts sleeping around just because he can. See, what Alice and Ed don't realize is that what they thought would bring them closer is actually driving them apart.

The problem lies with the Alice character. She is so simplistic and na´ve that it's as if she grew up on Mars. Her character makes this huge illogical leap to a lame conclusion, and the movie goes off from there. Granted, this could have been a funny movie if done correctly, but that's certainly not the case here. At least their friends can all see that their insane. Ed's friends Carl (Andy Richter, New York Minute, Elf) and Lou (Josh Charles, S.W.A.T., Our America) and Alice's friend Venita (Niki J. Crawford) all watch, dumbfounded, as Alice and Ed slowly drift apart. Wodorsky and Forbes then aim a little too high and try to give each minor character their own little part in the story, which ends up making this short movie feel even longer, and gives a random cameo by Korn's Jonathan Davis (Queen of the Damned). There are too many characters running around doing idiotic things, played by lots of sitcom rejects.

Wodorsky and Forbes think they are making deep and insightful statements on relationships, but their observations are superficial at best. Their treatment of the characters, especially Alice, is stereotypical. If not for the presence of Forbes' name on the credits, one would get the impression that a bunch of guys sat around and wrote this. Imagine the dialogue of a Kevin Smith movie, then take away the style and humor, and that's what is here in Seeing Other People. The characters ramble on stupidly about the state of their relationships, and once they run out of things to say, Wodorsky ups the ante and throws in some totally implausible elements into the mix. Eventually the two reach the epiphany that hey, their love is enough for each other, but it's too bad that everyone else reached the same conclusion not long after the movie started.

Mongoose Rates It: Pretty Bad.
1 hour, 30 minutes, Rated R for strong sexual content, language, and some drug material.

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