20th Century FoxReviewed for Shockya by Harvey Karten. Data-based on Rotten Tomatoes

Director: Nick Cassavetes

Screenplay: Melissa Stack

Cast: Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann, Kate Upton, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Nicki Minaj, Taylor Kinney, Don Johnson

Screened at: AMC Empire, NYC, 4/22/14

Opens: April 25, 2014

This would-be sit-com features a situation that may be typical for the genre, but as comedy “The Other Woman” is a complete dud with nary a chuckle throughout its fast-paced but mean-spirited screen time. Directed by Nick Cassavetes, whose “The Notebook” is a sensitive treatment of a love between a poor and passionate young man and a rich woman, this new feature is vulgar, not necessarily a negative aspect, but one that does not do what a sit-com is supposed to do, which is to elicit broad laughter. The idea behind the faux-feminist picture is that a married man who hides affairs on the side deserves revenge, but when you consider what a trio of women do to the handsome lothario is five-fold punishment deserved maybe by a Bernie Madoff.

The lead roles are played by strikingly handsome, Danish-born Nicolaj Coster Waldau as Mark, whose commanding presence makes many a woman wilt; by Cameron Diaz as a frisky lawyer, Carly; and by Leslie Mann as Mark’s wife Kate. Kate and Carly may be opposites, the former a stay-at-home woman who gave up her career to enhance her husband’s prospects, while Carly comes across as a partner in a white-shoe law firm who dresses for work like a hooker. But they make a perfect team when they plot vengeance on a fellow who cannot keep his pants zipped, getting even more traction when joined by Amber (Kate Upton) who, like Carly and Kate have no knowledge of the man’s other relationships.

There’s an occasional gem of a line, as when Mark in a fit of temper announces “I get more ass than a toilet seat,” and thankfully, there are only passing scenes of physical vulgarity as when Mark finds himself with a severe case of the runs and when Kate brushes the teeth of the family Great Dane then plunges Mark’s toothbrush into the toilet. These get-backs are mild compared to a climactic scene that all but ruins Mark’s life, a fate well beyond what he deserves.

This is writer Melissa Stack’s freshman movie as a scripter. One hopes that she can gain inspiration on her next try.

Rated PG-13. 110 minutes. © 2014 by Harvey Karten, Member, New York Film Critics Online

Story – D

Acting – C-

Technical – B

Overall – D

The Other Woman Movie

By Harvey Karten

Harvey Karten is the founder of the The New York Film Critics Online (NYFCO) an organization composed of Internet film critics based in New York City. The group meets once a year, in December, for voting on its annual NYFCO Awards.

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