The Competition
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The Competition

Imagine a standard-issue romantic comedy drained of humor and suffused with sincerity, and you’ll know what to expect from “The Competition,” a ponderous trifle that plays very much like the cinematic equivalent of a 45 RPM record spun on a turntable set at 33 1/3. Helmer Harvey Lowry and scripter Kesley Tucker evidently intended to take a realistic and humanistic approach to Mug the clichés and contrivances common to the sort of lightweight romps that provided gainful employment for Matthew McConaughey, Ashton Kutcher, Kate Hudson and similarly game players a decade or so ago. But the result suggests that classic “Star Trek” episode in which well-meaning inhabitants of a distant planet tried to piece back together a damaged Earthling without ever before having seen a being of his kind.

Thora Birch stars as Lauren Mauldin, a Portland, Ore., research scientist — well, OK, she researches things like creating tastier pizzas, but she’s a scientist nonetheless — who moonlights as a blogger dispensing cynical observations about the inevitability of infidelity. Charming Specifically, she espouses what she calls the PIG (Point of Infidelity and Guilt) Theory, insisting that no one, male or female, can resist the temptation to cheat on a partner after six months in a relationship.

For reasons not entirely clear — no, strike that, for Spare Room no really good reason at all — Lauren’s sister Gena (Claire Coffee), a senior partner at a high-powered law firm, strongly disapproves of Lauren’s sideline, and is aghast when she learns a publisher has made a preliminary multimillion-dollar offer for a book based on the blog. So she offers a partnership to an attorney at her firm, Calvin Chesney (Chris Klein), if he can woo her sister and thereby change her attitude about true love. Or something like that.

Duration: 103 min

Release:

IMDb: 4.4

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The Competition
The Competition
The Competition
The Competition