My Super Ex-Girlfriend


Rating 1½

Directed by Ivan Reitman

Written by Don Payne

Starring Uma Thurman (Jenny Johnson / G-Girl), Luke Wilson (Matt Saunders), Anna Faris (Hannah Lewis), Rainn Wilson (Vaughn Haige), Wanda Sykes (Carla Dunkirk) and Eddie Izzard (Barry Edward Lambert / Professor Bedlam)

Matt Saunders is secretly in love with his work colleague Hannah Lewis, but encouraged by his friend Vaughn Haige, he begins to date Jenny Johnson, who at first seems to be shy and slightly odd, until she reveals to him that she is really G-Girl, a super hero who attained her superhuman powers when she was exposed to a crashed meteorite as a teenager. Matt quickly realises that Jenny is neurotic and insanely jealous. Admitting to himself that he loves Hannah, he breaks off the relationship, but Jenny starts to exact revenge on him. Then Professor Bedlam, her arch-nemesis, offers him a way to neutralise her powers.


‘My Super Ex-Girlfriend’ was directed by Ivan Reitman, who is most famous as the director of the two ‘Ghostbusters’ films. His other films include the rom-com ‘Six Days Seven Nights’, the Arnold Schwarzenegger comedy film ‘Twins’ and two further decidedly unfunny comedy vehicles for Arnie, ‘Kindergarten Cop’ and ‘Junior’. Around the time of ‘Ghostbusters’, ‘Twins’ and ‘Legal Eagles’ in the mid to late 1980s, Reitman was very successful, but his films as a director since then have been patchy to say the least.

This 2006 film could have been very funny and should have been funnier than it is. However, like most of Reitman’s work, it constantly misfires. Too much reliance is placed on special effects in place of an actual plot. It needed to be either much more stupid, or, ideally, a lot darker. This would have played very well as a black comedy, but that is not Reitman’s style. Even Anna Faris, who has been rightly compared to Carole Lombard and is undoubtedly the best comedienne working in Hollywood today, probably since the untimely death of the great Gilda Radner twenty years ago, struggles to make much of the material, although she is the best thing here. The cast is likeable and the film itself is not altogether dislikeable. It just isn’t very funny.

‘My Super Ex-Girlfriend’ has a 40% rotten rating at Rotten Tomatoes from 124 reviews. Given a theatrical release starting in the summer of 2006, it has a worldwide box office gross a little under $61 million, although its production budget has been estimated at $65 million (I am not sure how accurate that figure is).

The screenplay was written by Don Payne, a writer on the long-running multi-award winning animated television series ‘The Simpsons’.

Review posted 12 July 2009


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