Tom (David Duchovny) and Rebecca (Julianne Moore) try to fix the sexual problems in their marriage, while Elaine (Maggie Gyllenhaal) wonders why her boyfriend of seven years, Tobey (Billy Crudup), doesn't want to get hitched.
Big question: Does "Trust the Man" feel less contrived than recent rom-coms like "The Break-Up" and "Failure to Launch"?
Catch it: "Trust the Man" squares in on couples teetering on the brink of change at moments when the inflection of a seemingly innocent comment can push them over the edge. It takes a mature, modern approach to believable situations happening to people that seem like they really exist, and the film's effortless charm makes you wonder why this type of sweet, smart romantic comedy comes along so rarely.
Skip it: If you think advertising has no redeeming qualities. Tom proves that creating the "Got Milk!" campaign goes over pretty well with women.
Bottom line: "Trust the Man" could do without its slapstick humor and would benefit from more focus to the guys' emotions. But this is a touching and often very funny film about real relationships, with a sincere belief in love in all its swooning, complicated glory.
Bonus: As Tobey learns, if you're over the age of 12, it's probably a good idea not to use your years-old email address. Few professionals want to send a message to Assman204.
Matt Pais is the metromix movies producer.
'Trust the Man'
Directed by Bart Freundlich; screenplay by Freundlich; photographed by Tim Orr; edited by John Gilroy; music by Clint Mansell; production design by Kevin Thompson; produced by Freundlich, Tim Perell and Sidney Kimmel. A Fox Searchlight Pictures release; opens Friday at AMC River East, Evanston Century Cinearts, AMC Loews Pipers Alley and AMC Loews Esquire. Running time: 1:43. MPAA rating: R (for language and sexual content).
Rebecca - Julianne Moore
Tom - David Duchovny
Elaine - Maggie Gyllenhaal
Tobey - Billy CrudupCopyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times