Willie Waffle is the movie critic for people who hate movie critics.

What To Expect When You're Expecting - Review

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whattoexpectwhenyoureexpectingposter.jpgWhat To Expect When You're Expecting could scare you away from having a baby for life.  It is the birth control of movies.  

Much like Valentine's Day or New Year's Eve or He's Just Not That Into You or countless many other groan inducing movies before it, What To Expect When You're Expecting is one of those ensemble films where the writing team as loosely as possible tries to interweave several characters all going through very similar circumstances.  In this case, everyone is pregnant or in some way expecting the addition of a lovely little bundle of joy to their lives.

Jules (Cameron Diaz) is a TV reality show fitness expert who ends up falling for a TV reality show dancer, Evan (Matthew Morrison).

Holly (Jennifer Lopez) is a struggling photographer trying to adopt a baby with her husband, Alex (Rodrigo Santoro).

Rosie (Anna Kendrick ) is a food truck chef and operator who ends up getting pregnant by her nemesis, Marco (Chace Crawford).

And, Wendy (Elizabeth Banks) is a writer and mommy store owner who, after years of trying, gets pregnant with her husband, Gary (Ben Falcone), only to feel like the whole experience is being upended by the surprise pregnancy of Gary's Dad, Ramsey (Dennis Quaid), and his much younger second wife, Skyler (Brooklyn Decker).

What To Expect When You're Expecting is one of those rare movies where you can see the intersection of actors whose careers are tracking in opposite directions as they approach a head on collision of epic proportions.  Some are on their way up, enjoying the chance to graduate from TV to movies or move from the background into leading roles, while other have to confront the falling and fading career that has led them to this dreck.  You have to think Diaz and Chris Rock were sitting around the set trying to figure out what went wrong in their careers and how they ended up here, while Falcone bothered them for their autograph.

Sadly, everything about What To Expect When You're Expecting feels like it was stolen from a bad TV sit-com.  The struggles between the couples are simple and contrived.  The big baby delivery scenes feature over-the-top screaming women uttering dialogue that should never have been written since I Love Lucy went off the air.  

That's why Rock sticks out so much in this movie.  He's so funny I have to think he wrote his own lines, since everything else in the movie is tired, unoriginal, uninspiring and bland.  
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Meanwhile, Decker is the best thing in What To Expect When You're Expecting.  The former Sports Illustrated swimsuit model has spent some serious time working on becoming an actor, because she was completely unrecognizable to me (and not just because she has lost too much weight and become too skinny).  She creates the best character with great comedic timing and a wonderful attitude.  She makes the lady extremely likable even though her character seems to have everything going for her in an annoying way that should evoke anger and jealousy from the audience.

With any luck, What To Expect When You're Expecting will put a stake through the heart of this genre, but I haven't been very lucky lately.

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1 Waffle (Out of 4)


What To Expect When You're Expecting is rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, thematic elements and language