Trust the Man

Rated 2.0

Two New York couples have romantic problems: A movie star returning to Broadway (Julianne Moore) has no time in bed for her husband (David Duchovny), while her brother (Billy Crudup) selfishly ignores the fact that his girlfriend (Maggie Gyllenhaal) wants to get married and start a family. Writer-director Bart Freundlich takes a swing at a sophisticated relationship comedy, but it’s not as easy as Woody Allen makes it look. The situations are trite; the dialogue is arch and self-conscious (memo to Freundlich: If you want to sound sophisticated, try keeping the bowel-movement jokes to a minimum); and the characters, despite sincere performances, are unlikable—the women are slightly more sympathetic, but not enough that they deserve better men. Tim Orr’s garish cinematography is also a drawback.