Not so much a rom-com but a chick lit adaptation (of the similarly titled novel by Emily Giffin), Something Borrowed is aimed squarely at the female audience. And the women who attended the same preview screening as me lapped it up, that's in spite of the film's heroine Rachel (Ginnifer Goodwin) doing the dirty on her BFF with her soon-to-be-husband.
Rachel and Darcy (Kate Hudson) have been friends since early grade school, and sharing in each others' big days from then on. Now Darcy is about to marry Dex (Tom Cruise clone, Colin Egglesfield), a former law school classmate of Rachel's whom she has always had feelings for but never dared acted on.
Turns out Dex has always felt the same way about Rachel and when they've had a little too much to drink at Rachel's 30th birthday party the two fall into bed, setting in motion a supposedly comic love triangle with Rachel and Dex conducting a stop-start affair behind Darcy's back. That Darcy is pitched as a selfish, self absorbed cow – kudos to Hudson for daring to play ugly – is supposed to negate this treachery. It certainly – strangely – had the women in my screening on side with Rachel.
Like Bride Wars, another matrimonially-themed Kate Hudson movie (aren't they all?), Something Borrowed pedals the notion that women are their own worst enemies, prepared to turn on even the best of friends in a heart beat. As a heroine, perhaps Rachel's flaws are designed to make her more relatable and forgivable, but she – along with Egglesfield's Dex – is, for the most part, a doormat and, ultimately, a rat.
Obviously director Luke Greenfield and screenwriter Jenny Snyder (and original author Giffin, for that matter) don't subscribe to the 'once a cheater, always a cheater' school of thought given the film's 'alls well that ends well' denouement. Then again, these characters deserve each other and everything they get.
The cast, however, which includes a scene stealing John Krasinski as Rachel's best male bud Ethan, deserves better. As do female audiences generally.