Magazine article The Spectator

Poor Planning

Magazine article The Spectator

Poor Planning

Article excerpt

The Adjustment Bureau

12A, Nationwide

Although I appreciate it is always hard to come down from the Oscars and that special, magical tingle in the air - if I hadn't turned in after MasterChef, as I always do, I would have certainly stayed up all night to watch - it's time to get back to business and this week's big film The Adjustment Bureau, which could do with a significant amount of adjusting itself.

It's preposterously silly, but that's kind of OK. Aren't we all preposterously silly at times? Isn't Gregg preposterously silly when he says 'cooking doesn't get tougher than this', even though it so could if you only had one leg, say, and then your hip fell out and your oven went on the blink? So preposterous silliness is fine, I'm all for it, but when preposterous silliness starts taking itself seriously, boy, are you in trouble, and that is the trouble here.

The Adjustment Bureau is fun and rather engaging until you start thinking, hang on, we're actually meant to believe in all this?

It's not ironic? After that, it's plain annoying, tiresome and dopey, and it just sort of drags itself to the end, which would, at least, be an original end if only it weren't one of those furiously paced races against time. Do they make it? I can't say, as that would be a spoiler, but if I were to think 'yes' and 'how could I have doubted it?' you'd certainly be heading in the right direction.

Now, what do I need to tell you, because that is how these things work? OK, Matt Damon stars as David Norris, a New York congressman on the up. I don't know. Does Matt Damon do anything for you? Does he?

Seriously? You don't find him too blandly doughy? Fair enough. So, we have Damon as this upcoming politician who, one evening, has a brief encounter with a beautiful dancer, Elise (Emily Blunt), and instantly falls in love. He knows she is his soul mate, and vice versa. So far, so good, as the chemistry between Damon and Blunt is rather juicy, and I do love juicy chemistry. (In fact, if you were ever to ask me to choose between juicy chemistry and MasterChef, I don't think I could. ) The trouble is, though, and this soon becomes apparent, they are not meant to be together. …

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