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‘The Bounty Hunter’ fails to excite

March 25th, 2010

Just when I thought Jennifer Aniston couldn’t top her last blockbuster hit “Love Happens,” along came “The Bounty Hunter.” Paired with Scottish sensation Gerard Butler (“300”), Aniston delivers another weak performance in her umpteenth attempt at a romantic comedy.

At times, I struggle to decipher whether a duo has what professionals call “on-screen chemistry.” This one was pretty apparent though, as both Aniston and Butler struggled to get in sync in a movie composed of multiple little coincidences and one-liners.

Aniston plays a driven, career-oriented news reporter for The Daily News hoping to break a major story about corruption in their local police force. While Butler, Aniston’s ex-husband in the movie, portrays a washed-up, former cop turned bounty hunter that tracks down minor felons for a decent sum of money. Butler receives the ultimate opportunity for revenge when his next order is to reign in Aniston for missing her court date.

A boring, predictable storyline will even make the easily-entertained bored to death. Slow to develop, it took nearly 100 minutes for any kind of excitement to unfold.

Even then, it wasn’t enough to engage, excite or interest the moviegoers because of the predictability.

This movie would have done better if it were released in 1988. When our parents were growing up, there was an interest for a heterosexual, battle of the sexes movie that demonstrated the bickering that happens between the genders.

“The Bounty Hunter” hoped to demonstrate the differences between men and women and human behavior. Quite the opposite happened.

Instead, the comedy and sophomoric jokes dumbed down their personalities and made for a sequence of poorly written lines and scenes.

Butler, who plays Milo Boyd in the film, has fallen into the role of playing a self-immersed Neanderthal that desensitizes the audience from what could’ve been some decent humor. His continual rude and petulant remarks to his counterpart Aniston, give men hope that it’s OK to act like a jerk to women. Similar to his role in “The Ugly Truth,” Butler portrays the typical shallow man who is more worried about physical features and fails to emotionally connect with women … until the end.

An ending is best when it’s unpredictable. Audiences sit on the edge of their seats, racing through every possible outcome in their heads, anxiously anticipating the conclusion.

Well, I hate to break it to you, but that doesn’t exactly happen in this one.

Rather, it’s more like you try to play the game, “Predictability Streak.” Basically, you see how many times in a row you can guess what will happen next (hint: pick what seems most predictable).

Overall, “The Bounty Hunter” portrayed a dichotomy so relentlessly overdone that you might as well save your money, stay home, and watch a real bounty hunter, like Duane “Dog” Chapman from “Dog the Bounty Hunter.”

At least that would be more unpredictable and an accurate display of life.