Ryan Reynolds plays William Hayes and as he walks the Manhattan streets, he puts what he calls the perfect song on his MP3 player, "Everyday People" by Sly and the Family Stone.
Therein lies the promise and premise of "Definitely, Maybe."
We are all everyday people and how we ping pong into each other careening through life is a story all of us can relate, resemble and relish. When a film is from the masterminds of "Notting Hill" and "Love, Actually," audiences can anticipate a fair share of romance and there is no lack of it in "Definitely, Maybe."
Fans of romantic comedies will not want to miss the DVD's release on June 24.
Who's my mommy?
Ryan Reynolds stars as William Hayes, who is living by himself with his adorable 10-year-old daughter Mya, portrayed with adorable panache by Abigail Breslin.
The who in this romantic trivia contest is a questioned wondered by Breslin. The 'how I met your mother' storyline is leagues beyond the television sitcom currently featuring cameos by Britney Spears.
Breslin's charm exhibited in "Little Miss Sunshine" is on full display and her chemistry with Reynolds is an unlikely success. Reynolds, the actor has taken a while to grow as someone to be taken as a serious leading man, comes into his own on "Definitely, Maybe." He has established himself as the new Cary Grant of the millennia. Straight, funny, paternal, Reynolds proves to have a penchant for perfect timing.
As Reynolds tells his good night story to his daughter on how he met her mother, there's mention of a pending divorce. Audiences are immediately aware, whoever mom is, is not someone who he is currently in a relationship.
We begin in Madison, Wisconsin, as Reynolds' Hayes meets Emily and the guessing game begins.
Elizabeth Banks is Emily, and the star of "Scrubs" and Reynolds are an awkward pair. Their chemistry does not seem correct, which is fantastic because their portrayal of a couple in an on and off relationship, deserves nothing less.
Hayes heads to New York City to work for Bill Clinton, then a Governor of Arkansas running for president.
It is in these early stages that the film establishes the comedy in romcom. Isla Fisher shows her grace for the comic timing exhibited in "Wedding Crashers." Her lack of idealism is what makes her character a perfect Ying to Reynolds' driven Yang. Of the three women, who inhabit the back-story of this film, Fisher's character is the one to cheer to be Reynolds's Cinderella.
During those flashbacks to the '90s, Kevin Kline makes a surprise cameo in what can only be described as a brilliant, oversexed writer taken from the pages of Hemingway himself. With his Muddy waters soundtrack, Kline's addition to "Definitely, Maybe" is a welcomed surprise.
It's not complicated at all
Watch Ryan's comic timing as Breslin asks him what the word 'threesome' means. As he replies, his subsequent facial gestures with eye twitch, is further proof this actor is coming into his own.
The third of the three women who could serve as Mya's mom is Rachel Weisz, who stars as a girlfriend of Kline's writer. She and Reynolds' relationship truly serves a terrific plot function in "Definitely Maybe" by allowing a turning point that serves as the beginning of the concluding act three.
Oscar-winner Weisz is equally subtle and piercing as Summer, the writer looking for a big break who finds it in Reynolds's campaign worker.
Another brilliant addition to the story telling toolbox the film utilizes is its use of split screen. By employing the filmmaking technique, writer director Adam Brooks achieves a seamless way to inter cut between storylines 18 years apart.
At one point Weisz sings "I've Got a Crush on You" to Reynolds and it is pure Hollywood romance. In fact, the entire score by Clint Mansell captures its emotion by often using nothing more than a piano. You'd be hard pressed to find a more passionate instrument to capture the nuances of falling in and out of love while life's curve balls come at high speed.
Also a joy of "Definitely, Maybe" is its Forrest Gump-like use of pop culture references to date the story. One particular scene shines as a personal joy, when Reynolds first hears Kurt Cobain. Again, the actor's facial gestures capture the wonder.
There is no maybe in the emotions surrounding this film. When it comes to "Definitely, Maybe," SheKnows says 'definitely yes' to running, not walking, to add the "Definitely, Maybe" DVD to your collection when it debuts June 24.