Howard Deutch, the man behind Grumpier Old Men, The Odd Couple II, and The Whole Ten Yards, has never been considered a visionary director, but My Best Friend’s Girl is easily the worst thing he’s done.
An appalling alleged ‘comedy’, the film focuses on a particularly unsavory character who makes his living by taking women out on intentionally awful dates in the hopes that they’ll return to their ex-boyfriends. Cue snippy line about how this film is so intentionally bad that audiences will go running in horror to the latest PG-13 Kate Hudson rom-com.
Dane Cook stars as the central character here, appropriately named ‘Tank’, who, yes, really does make a living by taking women out on lousy dates, having hundreds of satisfied customers, or so we’re led to believe. He takes them out to unhygienic Mexican restaurants, strip clubs, or (in the film’s one good gag) he takes a religious girl to a pizza place named ‘Cheesus Crust’.
He insults them repeatedly, gropes at them, makes an ass of himself, and otherwise assaults them in such an outrageous manner that any instance of this in real life would lead to a sexual harassment case. But no, this is a ‘comedy’, we’re supposed to laugh. I didn’t laugh, but I did pray that the dates wouldn’t end in violent instances of rape, because that’s where they frequently seemed to be heading.
So nice guy Dustin (Jason Biggs), who happens to be Tank’s roommate and best friend, hires Tank to win back pseudo-girlfriend Alexis (Kate Hudson), who never seemed to have any interest in Dustin in the first place. Tank takes her out, and despite him insulting her at every turn, and her being disgustingly drunk, the two fall in love. Or something like that.
The plot resolves itself in such a roundabout way that even the most undemanding viewers will be left scratching their heads. Final scene: Alexis bonds with Tank while aiding him embarrass a woman on one of his lousy dates. As if this were acceptable, and the character didn’t need to be taught any lessons.
Alec Baldwin shows up in a couple scenes as Tank’s father, even more misogynistic than his son, in a new career low.
My Best Friend’s Girl may be watchable (just barely) but it’s so unpleasant you’ll be left feeling slimy for hours afterward. If you must watch, I strongly urge you to do so alone.