Directed by Martin Brest, starring Ben Affleck, Jennifer Lopez, Justin Bartha, Christopher Walken and Al Pacino.

Martin Brest leaves big gaps between his films. 'Beverly Hills Cop' in 1984 was followed by the great 'Midnight Run' in 1988; he was Oscar-nominated for 1992's 'Scent of a Woman' and then made 'Meet Joe Black' six years later. Perhaps the gentlest way to say it is that after 'Gigli', his calendar should be free for quite some time.

Ridiculously cast, plotted and acted, Affleck plays Larry Gigli ("pronounced like 'really'"), mobster muscle who's hired to kidnap Brian (Bartha), the special needs brother of a District Attorney. However far your imagination has to be stretched to accept Affleck as a tough guy, it's nothing to how far it'll be bent out of shape with his partner in crime. Lopez is Ricki, a lesbian contract assassin, brought in to make sure Gigli doesn't mess up the job. He falls for her and she wants to know why he's so sad – although, tragically, Affleck doesn't step out of character, face the camera and address his grievances to Brest.

Even more remarkable than the confused tone (the un-funniest comedy, the most un-involving love story, the shallowest character study - take your pick) is the complete absence of chemistry between the two leads. Making the relationship between C-3PO and R2-D2 look like '9½ Weeks', they trudge from one scene to another with the big question not if they'll get together but rather if the whole script is ad-libbed and if not, how it ever made it off a laptop. Hopefully, Brest did a DVD commentary before the howls of derision echoed around the cinemas of the world because if he can explain this film away, a career in crisis PR could tide him over during his movie lay-off.

How any relationship could be expected to survive after 'Gigli' is a mystery. So if you're thinking of bringing someone for the laugh, be prepared to go home alone.

Harry Guerin