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  • PG
  • Comedy, Fantasy
  • 2006
  • 102 mins

Just My Luck

Just My Luck

Synopsis

Luck is exchanged along with kisses in this romantic comedy starring Lindsay Lohan

About

Young PR assistant Ashley Albright (Lindsay Lohan) is preternaturally lucky. The rain stops just as she leaves her apartment, she finds money literally sticking to her shoe, she can always get a cab (in New York City!) - and best of all, she has just single-handedly won a contract from big-time music executive Damon Phillips (Faizon Love) to organise a masquerade ball. Bowling club janitor Jake Hardin (Chris Pine), on the other hand, seems cursed with ill fortune, clumsily attracting one disaster after the next - and try as he might, the fates keep conspiring to prevent him from handing over to Phillips a demo of the band McFly that Jake has discovered and hopes to produce.

Destiny brings this mismatched pair together at the ball, where a single magical kiss reverses their fortunes. Now Ashley's life is falling apart, while Jake's star is rising; and as Ashley races to find the masked man whose lips can restore her luck, by coincidence she runs into the now successful Jake, who helps her to find her feet in the world of misfortune that until recently he knew so well. Soon they are falling in love, but with Ashley slowly resuming her ascent of the corporate ladder, and Jake about to guide McFly through their debut concert in New York, neither can afford the kiss that might make their luck run out.

From her feature debut in The Parent Trap (1998) to films like Freaky Friday (2003), Confessions Of A Teenage Drama Queen (2004) and Mean Girls (2004), Lindsay Lohan has long reigned as the princess of teen comedy; but now that both she and her audience are getting older, the time has come for her to show a more mature on-screen persona. Yet even if Just My Luck offers Lohan her first role as a grown-up, places her in a corporate New York, and manages to contrive a scene in which she gets to wear a dress owned by Sarah Jessica Parker, the sex in this city never seems to get beyond first base, suggesting that Lohan is not ready to abandon her younger fans.

Make no mistake about it: despite all the adult characters, Just My Luck, with its giddily innocent focus on the world-changing power of a first kiss, is a romantic fairytale aimed strictly at girls in their early teens.

Still, it might have been so much worse. Boaz Yakin's Uptown Girls (2003) was also set in the Big Apple, also featured a girl-woman protagonist shaken from her complacent sense of entitlement, and also closed with a rock concert finale - but Lohan, unlike Brittany Murphy, is charming enough to carry the audience along with her character no matter how self-absorbed she may be. And the Brit Award-winning McFly have enough talent to fit the bill of an emerging rock group described as "like early Beatles meets Blink 182", and will no doubt, thanks to their shrewd participation in the film, gain themselves a foothold in America's music market. Good luck to them.

Despite much decidedly juvenile material ("the moon is in Uranus", etc.) and a strange obsession with "poo-poo", there are enough smart lines here to keep Just My Luck breezing along. And the many speculations on luck, karma and destiny, though never quite as high-concept as in Intacto (2001) or The Cooler (2003), certainly give the cliches of the romantic comedy genre a new spin.

Cast & Connections

  • Actor: Carlos Ponce, Makenzie Vega, Samaire Armstrong, Chris Pine, Bree Turner, Lindsay Lohan, Missi Pyle, Faizon Love, Tovah Feldshuh
  • Director: Donald Petrie
  • Screen Writer: I Marlene King, Amy B Harris
  • Writer (Book): I Marlene King
  • Writer (Story): Jonathan Bernstein, James Greer, Mark Blackwell
  • Producer: Arnon Milchan, Donald Petrie, Arnold Rifkin
  • Photographer: Dean Semler
  • Composer: Teddy Castellucci

In a nutshell

It will hardly change the course of your life, but you could have worse luck than watching this romantic comedy.

by Anton Bitel

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