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Mixed or average reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

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5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 57 Ratings

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  • Summary: Friends With Kids is a comedy about a close-knit circle of friends at that moment in life when children arrive and everything changes. The last two singles in the group observe the effect that kids have had on their friends' relationships and wonder if there’s a better way. They decide to have a kid together - and date other people. This unconventional 'experiment' leads everyone in the group to question the nature of friendship, family and, finally, true love. (Roadside Attractions) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Mar 8, 2012
    88
    An indelibly funny and touching comedy with a real sting in its tail. The laughs leave scars.
  2. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Mar 9, 2012
    75
    Credit Westfeldt, who is also the writer and director, with a classic setup for farce, brightly executed.
  3. Mar 8, 2012
    70
    What will likely draw butts into theaters for Friends with Kids isn't one star in particular, but the sum of its comic pieces.
  4. Reviewed by: Mary Pols
    Mar 8, 2012
    60
    The movie looks like every other rom com, all spacious apartments and sleek, woodsy vacation homes, but it takes you through a wider range of responses to the relationships and characters than most.
  5. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Mar 10, 2012
    50
    In spite of my general distaste for Friends With Kids, let me cast my vote on the side of those who liked the ending. I wish more of the film had had that scene's fresh mixture of casual banter and breathless intimacy, instead of sounding like half-remembered dialogue from a movie we've all seen too many times before.
  6. Reviewed by: Jeannette Catsoulis
    Mar 8, 2012
    50
    The result is a talky, predictable, less-audacious-than-it-thinks romantic comedy.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Mar 8, 2012
    10
    It's shrill in tone, awash in unexamined narcissism - kids are just pretexts for laughs, rather than objects of love - and afflicted by explosive verbal diarrhea. There's simply no base line of normal human activity, let alone intimacy, until the anticouple finally re-examines their anticommitment credo. By then everyone has been so selfish and dislikable that our commitment to the film is lost.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 26
  2. Negative: 7 out of 26
  1. Mar 26, 2012
    10
    I loved this movie and would recommend everyone to see it. I disagree with every reservation expressed by the critics. Unlike them, I feel this was a perfect movie. Jennifer Westfeldt, who wrote, directed, and acted in this movie deserves a lot of credit for doing so many tasks so well. I'm guessing that it was a labor of love.

    The script, which is the backbone of any movie: * was centered around an important issue (what do singles do about having a family as they're getting older), * advanced the action naturally from one scene and dilemma to another, * contained dialogue and repartee that was natural and witty

    The direction: * kept us continually engaged - there wasn't one moment that I was just waiting for the next thing to happen - even though I was eager to find out * kept the dialogue flowing between 6 actors - which is not an easy task * had all the actors act perfectly without any false notes * integrated the kids into the action - another difficult directing task

    The acting: * was great. All the actors were funny, exasperated, mean, kind, caring, and loving in turn with no false notes

    Go see it! See if I'm right and the kvetchy critics are wrong!
    Expand
  2. Mar 22, 2012
    9
    Rarely does a movie present characters that you identify with everyone of them or have been everyone of them at some point in your life. Yet somehow you want to be none of them. That is life. Humor, truth, emotion, and the impossible dilemmas of life rarely rear their heads together in one story, but they do here. Though the directing is nowhere near Woody Allen's Hanna and Manhattan, and the climax is very hollywood, the majority of the film would make Woody very proud. Expand
  3. Mar 10, 2012
    7
    Seems tough to believe that after the hundreds of rom coms that have been done that we'd see an original concept floated, but that's what this movie brings us. The lead actors are terrific, and the supporting characters (Bridesmaids II) are excellent - though I'm getting the feeling the John Hamm is really a one-role (DD) guy. The movie drags a bit 3/4 of the way into it, but otherwise it's a solid movie with plenty of laughs and hide-your-face moments. Even Megan Fox does a decent job. Worth seeing. Expand
  4. Mar 9, 2012
    6
    Much to the akin of a cross between vintage Woody Allen meets Manhattan-set tv sitcoms "Seinfield," and "Friends," with a hint of "Sex and the City," this 'romantic-comedy' doesn't short-change the genre itself; it's both romantic and is certainly funny. From the writer and director, who brought the lesbian-spun quest of finding love in one's 20's to life ("Kissing Jessica Stein"), comes the boundlessly talented Jennifer Westfeldt, who not only writes and directs, but also stars (with also real-life spouse Jon Hamm) in this ensemble comedy. Again putting a twist on relationships, Westfeldt, this time, delineates seeking love in one's 30's...with a baby. The story centers around the lives of two best friends Julie (Jennifer Westfeldt) and Jason (Adam Scott). Each live in the same apartment building, and each engage in frequent one-night stands. Among their social circle, are other couples,who all gradually resort to having kids in their relationships, including the domineering wife Leslie (Maya Rudolph) and her emasculated, subservient laggard husband Alex (Chris O'Dowd). They are the first couple to have a baby. Next, Ben and wife Missy (Hamm and Wiig) have a child. Once their innocent infatuation with child-rearing manifests itself into an actual child, though, the two naive lovebirds resort to heated bickering...like children themselves. When Julie and Jason realize that they get along better than the already married and now-parents, they begin to consider having a child of their own: without the "marriage." The characters' logic stems from the view that most marriages, statistically end in divorce, and that since on average they tend to fail more than they suceed, having a child without the "unnecessary" complexity, would somehow make the situation easier. It lost me too. Regardless, the two friends continue dating, Julie meets empathetically sensitive Kurt (Ed Burns), while Jason stumbles upon tantalizing Mary Jane (Megan Fox). So, the once strictly platonic friends begin to become 'friends' with, a bit more, than meaningless, innocuous 'benefits.' Among the benefits of 'Friends' is a vivaciously committed cast, that has a sense of resonance and on-screen cohesion that may be due to the majority of the cast having already worked together in "Bridesmaids." Nontheless, they congeal and show real, plausible emotion. Also ballasting the film is a slick script that supports the actions of its characters, and inevitably, makes it worth watching; it touches upon a real-life element in social interaction upon friends--the jealousies, judgments, artificialities, and genuine emphathy--that rings a tune of realism. As expected from an ensemble comedy, each of the characters turns in a serviceable performance, Rudolph and O'Dowd being the most distinguisable--too, having worked together in "Bridesmaids"--and being the largest beneficiaries from the strong script. Hamm maintains his charismatic coolness, as usual, though Wiig is arguably the least effective; her role is simply too restrained and irrelevantly peripheral; she's wasted. Furthermore, the two leads are strong, especially Scott, who finally is given a primary role to showcase his causticly acrid demeanor and rapacious output, that the viewer can see and feel him deliver; he shines. Though Westfeldt pulls off an amazing task of directing, writing, producing, and starring in the film, she creates her own character as coming off slightly too simpering and needy. By the latter half, "Friends with Kids" becomes all too predictable, and loses its originality, resorting to genre-specific cliches, and all too-familiar unfunny, ribald humor. In addition, the film is completely oblivious to its various audiences: it's too progressive for some, not enough for others, and perhaps a bit too aloof from the implications of its subject. Having said that, notwithstanding the right intangibles, the film treats its title characters (the kids themselves) as being mere innate objects, burdens laden with excrement and cacophonous sound, of which don't deserve solid, fully-committed, fully-faithful parents; the 'kids''s needs are shown as being offensively inconsequential. The underlying message: it's acceptable to have children if it makes "us" happy. Where is the mention of children's happiness? Casting the moral and ethical concerns aside, "Friends with Kids" is one of the better rom-coms made in quite a while. Expand
  5. Mar 17, 2012
    4
    An epic failure of a movie that spends too much time on two moderately appealing characters and never expands on 4 other equally-as-interesting characters. Formulaic for about 95% of the movie, I spent most of my time wondering why it seemed so conceptually similar to When Harry Met Sally, yet was centered around babies. Then, with 10 crucial minutes left to wrap up a story that, if continuing with the formula, had a very predictable ending, yet if it strayed from the formula, it was going to happen very quickly and would ultimately ruin the movie. Somehow, this movie did both. This was a long hour and forty minutes. And the depth just wasn't there. On one hand, it seemed like Jon Hamm life partner, Jennifer Westfeldt, was constructing a sweet film about friends who fall in love, but then on the other, she reduced it to a very shallow and empty story. Such a waste of an incredible cast. Expand
  6. Mar 20, 2012
    3
    The movie starts out promising but falls flat. There is not a scene in the movie that is not predictable. There are also some anti-religious statements thrown in that do not further the plot but just serve as a way for the writer (and star) to push their own liberal views. Expand
  7. Mar 11, 2012
    0
    This was terrible, watched it with the family and was extremely disappointed. The main actress showed us what bad acting is.. please trust me when i say.. DO NOT WATCH THIS... Expand

See all 26 User Reviews

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