One positive about not being a critic as a youth was having a biased opinion on favorite actors. Those few actors you will watch in anything, no matter how good or bad they are in it. For me, one of those actors I would watch anything in, and still would, is Mr. Will Smith. Yes, many people are tired of Will, saying he is pretty much the Fresh Prince in everything he is in, but I respectfully disagree. “Hitch” is one of those movies that I initially enjoyed, so how does it hold up?
Alex ‘Hitch’ Hitchens, also known as “The Date Doctor” (Smith) is an expert in his field of privately consulting his fellow man into sweeping any woman off their feet. He instructs them into getting at least three dates, and after that, they are on their own. Albert Brennaman (Kevin James) is Hitch’s next client, and seemingly his most difficult case yet. Albert is nuts about Allegra Cole (Amber Valletta), a national celebrity. Clearly, the odds are against him, but Hitch is ready for a challenge. Apart from that storyline, Hitch also is attempting to woo Sara Melas (Eva Mendez), a reporter that is unbeknownst to him working to expose his alter-ego.
Sometimes second storylines are neither necessary or done right. Sometimes, they are put in solely to expand the runtime of the film, but this secondary plot was just as important as the first, and both compliment each other extremely well. It shows how Hitch can get any guy with any girl, but when it comes down to him, he keeps getting his own moves wrong, which calls for some good humor.
This is one of the few romantic-comedies that can be enjoyed by both men and women, and one of the fewer rom-coms that focus on the main-guy instead of the girl. Of course, the men in the movie do act like gentlemen, something most guys would deem as unmanly and solely used to appeal to women, but there are gentlemen in the world. I have also never seen a professional-wingman type movie. Wingman is the wrong word, but it’s close enough.
So what elements do we have to look at for a romantic comedy? Acting and writing (obviously), predictability and most importantly chemistry. The acting and chemistry fall into each other, and I don’t think anyone would disagree with stating Will Smith and Eva Mendez have pretty good chemistry. Technically, I would say the most chemistry in a love interest I have seen with Will Smith is Rosario Dawson, who starred with him in both Men in Black II and Seven Pounds. Kevin James and Amber Valletta also have surprising good chemistry in a playful way. Finally, Will Smith and Kevin James act like they have played in countless movies before this, they probably had the strongest chemistry out of anyone.
Writing and predictability go hand in hand as well for this film. For a romantic comedy, this movie was unpredictable to a degree. Obviously, there is going to be a good ending, but the events leading up to that good ending do a pretty good job at holding an unpredictable level, which is more than I can say for most rom-coms. As for the writing, like I said, I have never seen anything like it, so this approach was rather original.
All in all, I would easily say this is better than a lot of romantic comedies, I wouldn’t say all right off bat, but from a list of romcoms, Hitch is among the top few movies that I would decide to watch out of all of them. Maybe it’s because of Will Smith, maybe it’s because of the comedy, maybe because it’s just good fun, who knows? I just know I like it.