Love and Other Drugs is about people in the midst of their lives who arrive at somewhere precious by accident. It’s about ambition and commerce, because life is about ambition and commerce, but it soon transmutes into a love story, because life is often that, too. Love becomes, for two people, the great challenge and the great educator, and at every step of this beautiful film, we believe it.
There are a number of things to like about Edward Zwick‘s Love and Other Drugs, so it seems churlish to quibble about the problems.
But those foibles are what keep Zwick’s nervy blend of romantic comedy and drama from being a really good movie, instead of merely a good date destination. The problems aren’t terminal, but they are persistent.
Zwick’s film, which he and cowriter Marshall Herskovitz adapted with Charles Randolph from James Reidy’s book, starts funny, gets funnier, then makes a turn to the serious. The laughs don’t stop entirely, but the tone and the focus have changed in ways that deepen and strengthen the film. Yet Zwick’s film can’t quite make the leap to something even deeper – or funnier, for that matter…read more [The Huffington Post]
Like a bad combination of meds, Love and Other Drugs leaves you with a queasy, disoriented feeling. One minute you’re watching a crass sex comedy about Viagra, the next it’s a cloying tearjerker about Parkinson’s disease.
It’s as if director Edward Zwick was trying to concoct the a medical-themed date movie that would appeal both to frat boys and to their Nicholas Sparks — reading girlfriends — but it all went horribly wrong. Only the staunchest fans of Jake Gyllenhaal and Anne Hathaway will be able to watch this without groaning at the humour and snickering through the tragedy…read more [CBS News]
Based very loosely on Jamie Ready’s memoir about working for Pfizer at the start of the Viagra-led pharmaceutical boom, Love and Other Drugs puts Jake Gyllenhaal’s toothy charm front and center, a newbie drug rep who knows perfectly well that sex appeal is the way to sell heart medication to doctors and their easily wooed assistants. Living in a shitty beige apartment in the Ohio River Valley while he gets his start in the business, Jamie meets cute with Parkinson’s patient Maggie (Hathaway) during a sales call, and once he figures out she’s also only in it for good sex and no strings attached, the two start bonking in her ridiculously well-appointed loft. There’s plenty of nudity to behold, and Zwick shoots the sex scenes in a way that perfectly toes the line between hot and icky; watching the two of them lounging naked in bed, giggling and teasing each other as often as they make out, the depth of Jamie and Maggie’s relationship is established remarkably quickly…read more [Cinemablend]
Is it a sex romp? A romcom? A medical melodrama? A sentimental misstep? Love and Other Drugs needs help, it suffers from acute schizophrenia, having been unable to define itself, instead co-opting every genre in the Hollywood playbook.
It’s excruciatingly at times, telling the story of an up and coming pharmaceutical sales rep (Jake Gyllenhaal) – is it a social ladder jumping story? – who sleeps with every nurse and receptionists he can find.
He begins a one-sided affair with a gorgeous woman in the early stages of Parkinson’s disease (Anne Hathaway) who needs the pills he can give her. It tries to be profound, emotional, funny, witty, and outrageous but winds up as an exercise in unedited self indulgence…read more [Monster and Critics]
…Love and Other Drugs is also a film that relies on montages for nearly every moment of exposition. The two are in love? Montage. The couple can’t make it work? Montage. Hathaway’s disease leaving her feeling fatigued and vulnerable? Montage me, and lay on the sappy lyrics if you please. This is no way to run a drama or a comedy, and Love and Other Drugs suffers mightily for the transgression. This is a film bathed in music, but not meaningful dialogue, and all the acoustic cheese in the world can’t save it from the pointed lack of contribution from the script…read more [Film.com]
Despite my inherent tendency for unrelenting cynicism I hold a tiny place in my heart for solid rom-coms. Supporters of the genre should be pleased with Ed Zwick’s latest picture, Love And Other Drugs, and it’s possible he’ll sufficiently peak the interest of my fellow cynics. Starring the always pleasant Anne Hathaway and a swoon-worthy Jake Gyllenhaal, this unconventional tale of love in it’s various forms opens nationwide this Wednesday…read more [Screen Crave]
Jake Gyllenhaal puts his good looks to work as Jamie Randall, a med school dropout who isn’t sure of anything besides his ADD and his ability to sweet talk ladies into bed. When he’s fired from his job at an electronics store (for sleeping with the boss’s girlfriend, no less), Jamie takes a job in Ohio as a pharmaceutical sales rep to please his overly bourgeois parents. He seems perfectly suited to a life of schmoozing doctors and peddling anti-depressants until he meets Maggie Murdoch (Anne Hathaway), a no-nonsense Parkinson’s patient who doesn’t fall for Jamie’s cheesy courtship rituals. One coffee date later, and Maggie and Jamie have agreed to a no-frills, strictly sexual relationship, since neither one is interested in being tied down…read more [BuzzSugar]
It’s tough to love a movie that pretends to tackle real-life issues but trades in its nerve for cuddliness and a warm bath of unreality. Hathaway’s seemingly health-insurance-less artist manages to pull wads of cash out of her pocket (literally) to pay for her treatments and Gyllenhaal’s empty salesman is used alternately to play off Hathaway’s pain and to set up silly comic scenes of people screaming and grasping at him and his brand-new wonder drug Viagra (It’s set in the 1990s, Spin Doctors songs and all.) The love-fixes-everything message is sweet enough if you’re not in the mood to dig deeper, but it’s no less a slap in the face for anyone in the audience who can’t afford their copay…read more [Movies.com]
There are lots of hot bodies and nudity though. The sex scenes between Jamie and Maggie are hot. Hathaway even tries blocking the view with her arm or pulling the sheets up, but her boob keeps popping out. You see Gyllenhaal’s butt a lot too, but more her.
There is such inherent drama in this relationship and the world of pharmaceutical ethics, couldn’t Ed Zwick just trust the material? The training methods Pfizer teaches their reps are interesting. Jamie’s game is more powerful than The Mystery Method too. Seriously, he could host a “Seduce and Destroy” seminar. There’s a really healthy scene where Maggie builds up Jamie’s self-esteem when he doesn’t even know he’s insecure. That’s followed by a totally fake love moment.
Love and Other Drugs has a substantive message about relationships and medicine, but it’s buried in the insincere rom-com. Maggie’s emotional moment is hardcore, and when Jamie breaks through her rejection, even I fell for him. All I can remember though are people talking with their mouths full and bumbling around on the phone…read more [ScreenJunkies]
The director is Edward Zwick, a considerable filmmaker. He’s essentially working with a screenplay (by Charles Randolph, Marshall Herskovitz and himself) that doesn’t work. Given that problem, you have to observe that he is a capable filmmaker even in bad weather. He obtains a warm, lovable performance from Anne Hathaway and dimensions from Gyllenhaal that grow from comedy to the serious. The scene with the husband of the Parkinson’s survivor has a simple grandeur. As a filmmaker by nature, Zwick gives that scene its full weight, no matter that it’s not a good fit in his movie. That counts for something…read more [Roger Ebert]
Love and Other Drugs Info
Rated: R for strong sexual content, nudity, pervasive language, and some drug material.
Jamie – Jake Gyllenhaal
Maggie – Anne Hathaway
Bruce – Oliver Platt
Dr. Knight – Hank Azaria
Josh – Josh Gad
Trey – Gabriel Macht
Director: Edward Zwick
Genre: Comedy | Romance
Official Movie Web Site