Newest in my venture to watch my movie collection in alphabetical(ish) order. To see other posts in the series, click here. As always, potential Spoiler Alert.
And we’ve reached our first foray into the ‘ish’ part of ‘alphabetical(ish).’ No, my movie collection does not skip the letters B through K. However, this L movie is shelved here because it’s part of a collection whose title starts with A.
Clear as mud?
This particular Angelina Jolie Collection consists of three movies. In an attempt to keep within spitting distance of the premise of this exercise, I am watching them in alphabetical order. So it’s an alphabetized list within an alphabetized list.
Yeah, that’s it.
Anyway, Life Or Something Like It. Never watched it before today. Now I’ve seen it both times: first and last.
It’s not just that it’s formulaic rom-com schtick. Although it is. Like, why do people in these movies always go to the person they hate the most for advice when things go wrong? Lanie (Angelina Jolie) runs straight to her toxic co-worker/nemesis Pete (Ed Burns) when things in her life go wrong. I once had a co-worker bully me so badly it drove me to thoughts of suicide, and I can guarantee you, when my life goes sideways, he is not on my list of people to talk to.
It’s also not that it’s got the most messed-up timeline I’ve ever seen in a movie. Prophet Jack (Tony Shaloub) tells Lanie she’s going to die in a week. Three days of events later, she’s still going to die in a week. Starting a new job tomorrow morning takes two days. The drive from the hotel to the studio for a morning show, in New York City traffic, starts well after the sun is up.
No, the truly maddening bit is how it buys into the whole, “A woman can only be fulfilled in a traditional relationship and she should give up everything to be there,” bullshit.
Lanie is a local newscaster who gets her big break dream job on network TV in New York. Her first interview is with Deborah Connors (Stockard Channing), a fellow newscaster and the woman who inspired Lanie to choose her career. Connors is receiving an award in recognition of 25 years in broadcasting, and she’ll only answer pre-approved questions. So what does Lanie do?
Of course, she punts the interview to ask Connors if breaking up with her boyfriend was worth it.
When Connors gets a bit sniffly at the memory, Lanie realizes her entire life has been a mistake, and gives up on her dream to run back to her toxic co-worker/nemesis because they had a nice day together once.
Just stop already.