Something that both sexes should agree on is that good romantic comedies are even harder to find than good men - and you can't change where you're looking. 'Grey's Anatomy' star Katherine Heigl struck gold in the genre with 2007's 'Knocked Up' and then followed it up with the altogether more wholesome and girlycentric '27 Dresses'. Here she returns to more risqué territory, with Scottish actor Gerard Butler playing the guy who's driving her mad.
Abby Richter (Heigl) is the workaholic producer of a well-made but very safe morning TV show who has carried through her professionalism to her personal life - researching meticulously for dates, reducing her suitors to a checklist and destroying any possibility of spontaneity. The job is all Abby really has, and with an audience share of 2.47% she mightn't have it for much longer.
Enter Mike Chadway (Butler) the say-anything-to-anyone host of a cable show called 'The Ugly Truth', a very up-close and personal take on gender politics and lust. He's hired by Abby's bosses to spice up the morning show and soon the ratings are up, the phones are hopping and the hosts' dead marriage has a new lease of life.
Abby is disgusted that her 'baby' is now less about worthy guests and more about bikini-clad twins wrestling in jelly. But from the moment he swaggered into the boardroom, Mike reckoned he had Abby all figured out. And while she hates to admit it, he's right.
Having seen how well Heigl sparked off Seth Rogen previously, it's a disappointment that the chemistry here bubbles rarely. 'The Ugly Truth' is too short, feels too rushed (one minute Abby despises Mike, the next he's teaching her how to pull) and the gags could've been a lot fresher. It's amazing that Heigl (who also co-produced) has ended up playing a character with so little depth or appeal - you never feel like cheering her on - and while Butler has the ability to deliver a good line as the man with more heart than he lets on, he doesn't get enough of them.
Another thing that both sexes should agree on is that most guys will sit through 'When Harry Met Sally' as happily as they will a 'Knocked Up', but not something that wants to be both and ends up a whole lot less than either.