Couples Retreat

MPAA Rated – PG-13
It’s 1:47 Long
A Review by:
The Dude on the Right

Couples Retreat
Movie Stats & Links
Starring: Vince Vaughn, Jason Bateman, Jon Favreau, Faizon Love, Kristen Davis, Malin Akerman, Kristen Bell, Jean Reno, Jim McMahon
MPAA Rated: PG-13
Released By: Universal Pictures
Release Date: 2009
Kiddie Movie: It’s mostly adult conversation. Get a sitter.
Date Movie: It’s got hot hunks for her and bikini clad women for you. It’s couples night!
Gratuitous Sex: A lot of suggested and talk, but still keeping it PG-13.
Gratuitous Violence: Nah.
Action: Nah.
Laughs: Lots from start to finish.
Memorable Scene: I keep coming back to “Dave’s” son in the home improvement store.
Memorable Quote: Nothing stands out.
Directed By: Peter Billingsley

Maybe I’m a stupid critic, but sometimes I think movies are made with the sole intention of bringing at least a little bit of a smile to the person who forks over their hard-earned money, and somehow I can enjoy those movies for exactly what they are. They aren’t made for “artistic” reasons, they aren’t supposed to spotlight the acting talents of the cast, and they aren’t supposed to invoke deep thoughts of the meaning of life or break new ground, and I believe “Couples Retreat” is one of those movies, with cheesiness, a slight cringe factor, a peeing child, and enough eye candy for both the dudes and dudette. So, critics be damned, I enjoyed the movie for what I wanted – a nice trip to the theater with my BFF where we could hold hands, laugh a little, and come out of the theater both going “That was kind of funny.”

Here’s the story…

Four couples are having four different “couple” issues. You’ve got Couple Number A: Dave (Vince Vaughn) and Ronnie (Malin Akerman) who have a couple of kids, Ronnie wants to do some home remodeling, and Dave gets to play a lot of Guitar Hero, or Rock Band (I always get them confused) because he is a sales rep. Then there is Couple Number B: Jason (Jason Bateman) and Cynthia (Kristen Bell), who are having relationship issues thanks to an inability to make a baby. Joey (Jon Favreau) and Lucy (Kristin Davis) were married right out of high school, have a teenage daughter who wears too little clothes, and are just waiting for their daughter to move out of the house so they can get divorced as Couple Number C. And finally you get newly divorced Shane (Faizon Love) hooking up with the youngster, Trudy (Kali Hawk), and Shane just can’t keep up, in the Couple Number D category.

Well, Jason and Cynthia decide that they want to make their marriage work and what better way to do it than by taking a trip to Bora Bora with their friends so that the two of them can work on their marriage while the others just have good time. The surprise comes when the resort people tell everyone that if they don’t all partake in the “couple’s therapy” session that they will just be sent home.

So our couples suck it up and all of them begin to realize their relationships have issues, even if they weren’t out in the open before, and wouldn’t you know it, thanks to some bonding, they all realize how they should work things out.

Look, like I wrote in that opening paragraph, “Couples Retreat” isn’t a cinematic masterpiece, and hell, even though it was filmed in Bora Bora, I think that was for the filmmakers to be able to write-off a trip to Bora Bora because the movie could have been filmed at any “tropical” local for the same scenery, but what “Couples Retreat” is is a funny look at married friends, and sure, some of the “situations” are over-the-top and dorky, but really, what are you expecting from a trailer that shows a yoga instructor pretty much having “over-the-clothes” sex with the women?

I like Vince Vaughn, and in his “every man” shlubness we tend to like he is just as good in his role as Dave. Somehow I totally bought the fact that Jason and Cynthia would put together a PowerPoint sales presentation to convince their friends to come to Eden with them, and, well, I pretty much liked everyone in their roles. The jokes were simple, the movie didn’t get too preachy on “how” to have a good marriage, and you’ve got to love little kids. It’s 3 ½ stars out of 5 for “Couples Retreat.” It’s nothing groundbreaking – just a fun time for both of you at the movie, or at least to snuggle on your couch when it makes it to DVD.

That’s it for this one! I’m The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!