Mixed or average reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 28
  2. Negative: 5 out of 28
  1. Rough around the edges, but once you get used to the laconic pace, the plot grooves along nicely.
  2. 67
    Take away the death and revelations that follow, and Catch And Release has the makings of a weekly half-hour network comedy--call it "Four's Company."
  3. Reviewed by: Angel Cohn
    As soon as it pitches camp in generic romantic-comedy territory, it loses its intriguing edge and becomes one more predictable girl-meets-unsuitable-boy story.
  4. 60
    One of those movies where the small pleasures stack up high enough to dwarf the disappointments.
  5. 60
    An oddly appealing, if innocuous, movie of considerable charm.
  6. Although I find the term "chick flick" odious, I imagine that Columbia Pictures regards Catch and Release as exactly that, although there are signs that Ms. Grant was reaching for something more layered and subtle than the usual fairy-tale formula
  7. 50
    Gray says she hates fishermen who catch and release: Getting jerked around hurts the jaw. See this movie and you'll know the feeling.
  8. Making her feature-film directorial debut, Grant is going for an everyday conversational texture and a sense of life's curveballs. But the results wander and you never really believe them.
  9. 50
    So superficial and formulaic that even Garner's mega-watt grin can't completely save it.
  10. Grant's film plays like a two-hour episode of "Friends" intercut with "Seventh Heaven." Those sounds you hear are wisecrack, heartbreak, heartbreak, wisecrack, wisecrack.
  11. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    There's a funkier and more interesting movie in Maureen, a character played by Juliette Lewis. Maureen is a single mom, a massage therapist, and a dimwit California follower of every new-age theory out there. She's a nasal, needy wreck, and Catch and Release is torn between adoring her and making ruthless fun of her.
  12. 50
    Because so little of it works, the film is disposable.
  13. 50
    It's not a comedy-drama, really. It's let's-all-share therapy in beautiful Boulder, Colo.
  14. 50
    Garner is no more than serviceable as the tightly wound Gray.
  15. Reviewed by: Lael Loewenstein
    A so-so romantic dramedy.
  16. As his wisecracking roomie, Smith keeps this contrived chick flick afloat, managing to steer past the kind of egregious product placement that would have capsized a less agile performer.
  17. I just don't know any chick who will make sense of this flick -- it's that blitheringly out of touch with present psychosexual (never mind feminist) time and space.
  18. An unfunny, undramatic comedy-drama that asks us to care about lying idiots making implausible choices.
  19. 40
    Won't make anybody’s "best of" lists a year from now, but it's nowhere near as offensive as some other examples of this moldy genre.
  20. Reviewed by: Tony Horkins
    A film with a fishing metaphor for a title should have come with sharper hooks.
  21. 40
    Now it's just another romantic comedy, neither terribly bad nor truly great, buoyed along on currents of hope and post-traumatic good cheer.
  22. The film suffers from a style that settles for pleasant or touching at the cost of spontaneous or impassioned. Too bad, because Ms. Garner is a genuinely pleasing presence.
  23. Throughout, Garner retains a permanent grimace, as if persuasive acting can be achieved by contorting cheek muscles and pouting lips. It's not just depressing to watch; it's tiring. We want to tell her to relax -- for our own relief.
  24. Really, women drag their husbands and boyfriends to films like writer-director Susannah Grant's emotionally bogus Catch and Release and I feel their pain. They should get a free Boys Night Out pass every time they make the sacrifice.
  25. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Catch and Release is not worth catching. Release yourself from boredom by giving it a miss.
  26. Reviewed by: Ethan Alter
    Time doesn't just slow down while you're watching Catch and Release -- it actually comes to a dead stop.
  27. Despite their hackneyed characters, Smith and Lewis create a tiny spark and add a little humour. Without them, Catch and Release would be totally dead in the water.
  28. 12
    The chick comedy-drama Catch and Release may look bland, but it's not. It's worse. To rise to the level of blandness, it would need to have a few gallons of Tabasco dumped into it.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 30 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 10
  2. Negative: 4 out of 10
  1. gregt.
    Jul 8, 2007
    "I don't know what others were expecting from this movie" was a common statement in the users comments... how about.. plot.. direction..screenwriting... ANYTHING AT ALL.. really pathetic... Full Review »
  2. PnArdyPnArdy
    May 13, 2007
    I would give it a five. A rather nice, but sometimes too artificial drama romance with Jennifer Garner (Alias) - a love triangle with an unnaturally happy ending. Full Review »
  3. ChadS.l
    Mar 17, 2007
    Gray (Jennifer Garner) never watched "When Harry Met Sally". If this fetchin' widow did, she would've recalled Harry's warning that there's no such thing as a platonic friend (if the woman is gorgeous), and would've found a more practical way to grieve over her fiance. One friend gets lucky, one carries around a torch, and one is too depressed to notice that a hot babe just crawled into his hospital bed. "Catch and Release" is sort of like "The Big Chill", but these thirtysomethings live the life on a full-time basis. When Gray sleeps with one of her male friends, we're supposed to feel like it's morally acceptable, because what's good for the goose (cooked goose, in this case) is good for the gander. However, the argument can be made that Gray would've hooked up with this guy in spite of her fiance's indiscretion. She's attractive; he's attractive; it was inevitable. Juliette Lewis, in her best role since she was Mallory("Natural Born Killers"), pumps fresh blood into "Catch and Release" just before these old friends become insufferable. The film missteps when it hurries the relationship between Gray and Maureen (Lewis). Before they broke bread, en route to amicability, there should've been a catfight between the two women to help convince us that Gray's loss was worth basing a whole movie around. There's not enough heartbreak (over her fiance's passing), or angst (over her fiance's affair) on Gray's part to make the audience happy for her newfound happiness and life. Full Review »