Ghosts of Girlfriends Past (2009)

Genre(s): Comedy / Fantasy / Romance
Warner Brothers || PG13 - 100 minutes - $28.98 || September 22, 2009
Reviewer: Brian Oliver || Posted On: 2009-09-23


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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

S P E C I A L
.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.
Video

.:: A U D I O ::.
Audio

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Overall
.::MOVIE INFORMATION::.
Director: Mark Waters
Writer(s): Jon Lucas & Scott Moore (written by)
Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, Breckin Meyer, Lacey Chabert, Robert Forester, Anne Archer, Emma Stone, Michael Douglas


Theatrical Release Date: May 1, 2009


.::DVD INFORMATION::.
Supplemental Material:
    None


Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Widescreen (2.40)
  • English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish

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.::THE FILM::.

Mark Waters’ (Mean Girls) latest movie – a bastardization of Charles Dickens’ “Christmas Carol” classic – stars Matthew “Can I Please Go Shirtless?” McConaughey as Connor Mead, a highly sought after photographer and all around douchebag who sleeps with hot women but never, ever, will date them... all because he was too much of a puss to not ask his childhood sweetheart, Jenny (Jennifer Garner), for a dance at his middle school formal.

The premise is that on the weekend of his little bro, Paul’s (Breckin Meyer), wedding to bridezilla (Lacey Chabert), Connor cannot help but let his views of marriage from possibly wrecking their plans. The wedding and party is taking place at Connor’s late Uncle’s estate, and while there, good old Uncle Wayne (Michael Douglas), Connor’s mentor in the ways of being an ass to women.

** Warning: Sarcastic Spoiling of the Entire Film **

Well, Wayne has not liked the way Connor’s life has gone and so on this weekend, he will be visited by three ghosts who will show him girlfriend’s past, present and future in the hopes that Connor will see the error of his ways, help save Paul’s wedding by making an inane speech after punching out the bride’s father, and getting his childhood sweetheart back into his life who just so happened to have been watching the speech in the car that was about to drive away but luckily Connor takes Uncle Wayne’s car out of the garage (smashing through the door rather than opening it), and getting in the middle of the road just in time. *Phew*.

** End Sarcastic Spoiling of the Entire Film **

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past isn’t a bad movie, in fact it’s worse than just a bad film... it’s boring. This is a plot that one would expect to find on Lifetime or Hallmark but somehow, someway it got a big production with a couple of stars (Michael Douglas, what the hell are you doing???) and thus a moderately marketed, widely distributed film that for some odd reason opened in the summer rather than, oh, I don’t know, Christmas time.

The film still managed to take in $97m worldwide but there really isn’t anything special out it. You get absolutely nothing new out of Matthew McConaughey that you haven’t already seen in his other rom-com stinkers like Fool’s Gold and Failure to Launch and Jennifer Garner, who I absolutely love, doesn’t really get to do all that much, heck it doesn’t even seem like she had that much screen time; I found her far more appealing in the drab Catch and Release.

On the plus side, the lovely and underrated Lacey Chabert is delightful – not the character, I just like seeing her in something finally – and the rest of the film is filled with some lovely ladies (see: Amanda Walsh, Camille Guaty and Christina Milian) to admire while the story began to stall out.

Again, it’s not that Ghosts of Girlfriends Past is an awful movie, more it is a waste of time, even by romantic comedy standards. I expect clichés in the genre, hell I’d be perplexed if it didn’t have that character-saving speech near the end, but there’s little else here to really admire or enjoy. I like McConaughey, I think given the right script he can do quite well, but when the script fails (by the way, it was written by the same guys who wrote 2009’s surprise hit, The Hangover), McConaughey also falls, fast and hard.



.::SPECIAL FEATURES::.

Other than some trailers for other Warner titles, no features here. Move along.



.::AUDIO & VIDEO::.

The movie is presented with its original 2.40 aspect ratio. The picture looks OK, though this is a fairly (and literally) dark film and has some pixilation issues at times. Other than that, colors are probably on par with what was seen in theaters.

The Dolby Digital 5.1 is nothing more than acceptable. The film is mainly dialogue with some 80s songs thrown in during Connor’s journey to the past. However, the rear speakers don’t get a whole lot of use and most of the action comes via the front channels.



.::OVERALL::.

Although the concept certainly was interesting, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past never lives up to it. The film is at times mildly entertaining for the female cast, but everything else is just forgettable. Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner share very little chemistry together and the story and filmmaking was just boring and unfunny.