Have you seen the commercials? The one in which Chris Rock leads a few guys through a park along with their children? The one that makes you want to watch What to Expect When You’re Expecting so you can laugh at the popular comedian?
If yes—know that you won’t be getting much of Rock in the movie that debuts Friday.
The movie, based on the 1984 book of the same name by Heidi Murkoff, is endearing, heartfelt and bring tears to your eyes at times—but doesn’t tell much about what a man goes through as he is expecting.
Instead, the movie focuses heavily on the women and the different obstacles and emotions they face as they expect to bring another life into the world.
And, I’m not complaining—I’m just saying.
The film features an all-star cast who make up five couples—each of whom face different bumps when pregnant.
There’s Holly and Alex (Jennifer Aniston and Rodrigo Santoro) who adopt when they are unsuccessful at conceiving; Jules and Evan (Cameron Diaz and Matthew Morrison) as the celebrity couple who disagree about every aspect of parenting; Wendy and Gary (Elizabeth Banks and Ben Falcone) as the couple who finally become pregnant after a relentless effort; and Skyler and Ramsey (Brooklyn Decker and Dennis Quaid) as the couple who define sugar daddy and hot, young blonde who become pregnant with twins without any real effort.
Then there’s Rosie and Marco (Anna Kendrick and Chace Crawford) as the twenty-something couple who accidentally get pregnant then face a miscarriage.
Then we have the convivial Dudes’ Group—four men who rely on each other for guidance as they figure out what it means to be a good father and promise not to judge one another (Tom Lennon, Rob Huebel, Amir Talai and Rock). They also ultimately serve as a guide for Alex who is initially unsure as to whether he wants to become a father.
And it is in the scenes where the members of the Dudes’ Group share their quandaries where the film truly shines. The four men are amusing, charming and competently prove they love being dads.
In fact, the film would’ve been better off at focusing on the hilarious Dudes’ Group and their comical obstacles with being the best fathers they can be.
Had director Kirk Jones done this, the film would’ve truly been set a part from other movies that focus heavily on women and their joys and troubles with expectancy.
What to Expect When You’re Expecting isn’t an Academy Award winner, but hey, it’s not like most of us were expecting it—right?