Don't expect much from J-Lo and co in What To Expect When You're Expecting
22:31 GMT, 24 May 2012
WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU'RE EXPECTING (12A)
Verdict: Doesn't deliver
A best-selling and famously graphic pregnancy guide may not strike you as obvious source material for a romantic comedy.
Quite how anyone thought it might be is no clearer at the end of this curious amalgam of cliche, misfiring jokes and misogynistic drivel than it was at the beginning.
Scroll down to watch trailer
Bizarre: What to Expect When You're Expecting is not the best book to best a romcom on
It is a disaster rendered doubly depressing by the quality of the cast, and while the likes of Cameron Diaz and Dennis Quaid clearly took leave of any critical faculties they possess when the script dropped into their laps, they manage to turn in performances that almost rescue this bizarre project from the scrapheap.
Three women (Diaz, Elizabeth Banks and Jennifer Lopez) are expecting babies, the latter via an improbably accelerated Ethiopian adoption.
The various travails endured by them and their partners (respectively Matthew Morrison, Ben Falcone and Rodrigo Santoro) on the path to parenthood provide what passes for a plot.
Oddly, the sideshows to these central stories prove a much richer seam of entertainment. Chris Rock is, as ever, first-class as the head of a gang of dads who meet in the park to exercise the children, vent frustrations and share paternal wisdom.
Quaid is similarly brilliant as the racing driver dad from hell, torturing his son Gary (Falcone) by simply being better than him at everything, including impregnation.
But cameos do not a movie make, and while Lopez strains gamely to inject her two-dimensional character with pathos, all the leads are ultimately betrayed by a script almost as silly as the idea of building a romcom around a pregnancy guide.
Now watch the trailer