Theres nothing worst than a film that’s boring or without emotion. Love and Other Drugs had the opportunity to be just another forgettable romantic comedy, but its mix of real life struggles with terrible illnesses and it’s perfectly timed humour make it something quite special.
Jamie (Jake Gyllenhaal) is the relative rookie when it comes to selling pharmaceutical drugs. But he has no trouble chatting up woman, until he meets Maggie (Anne Hathaway). The two hit it off and Jamie begins to really fall for her, something he rarely does. Jamie finds out that Maggie has Parkinson’s disease, and although he loves her he must decide whether he can take the long and tough road ahead with her or go back to his womanizing past.
Love and Other Drugs is essentially two movies, one is a typical romantic comedy with two feisty but compatible lovers and the other movie is a dark and realistic look at how certain illnesses can severely affect people’s lives and love lives. But when you see the trailer for this film (the one I’ve linked below), it completely ignores the serious plot areas of the film, mainly the part where Hathaway’s character has Parkinson’s disease. You could argue that they didn’t want to reveal everything in the trailer but I think they wanted an easier sell. It’s also a shame because both contrasting elements of the film are handled really well.
Gyllenhaal’s transformation from cocky salesman to the more grounded and caring person is quite believable mostly because Hathaway is so likeable, that the audience believes that Gyllenhaal would change his stripes for her. The humour in the film also hits all the right notes. Josh Gad plays Gyllenhaal’s brother and he’s gets the most laughs. He’s the well off loser who ponders around Gyllenhaal’s house doing very little. Oliver Platt is great here too doing his vintage smarmy rich guy routine.
You will laugh a lot in the first half of Love and Other Drugs and you may even shed a tear in the second half. But either way the film got a strong reaction from me.