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With Jim Sabatini

Playing For Keeps

Playing For Keeps
Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Uma Turman, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Dennis Quaid and Noah Lomax

Rated: PG-13 for some sexual situations, language and a brief intense image.
Reviewed by: Dave  
Release date: December 7, 2012 Released by: Film District

Playing for Keeps: A predictable romantic comedy starring Gerard Butler and Jessica Biel.
Butler plays an over-the-hill soccer star trying to rekindle his relationship with ex-wife (Biel) and son, Lewis (Noah Lomax).  Butler moves closer to them in hopes of winning her back. He is soon recruited by the local soccer team as their new coach. Lewis is a member of the team, and so it goes ... the beginning of a very predictable non-surprise ending.
The soccer moms throw themselves at Coach Butler - while the dads all want to be his best friend. Dennis Quaid is inspired as a rich businessman who bribes Butler with cash to play his son ... and his daughter to sing the National Anthem.

It's a shame Quaid's character was not more fully developed and expanded. He really is quite entertaining.

Catherine Zeta-Jones and Uma Thurman are two of the moms chasing after Butler. It is enjoyable watching them pursue him, but it's all in vain. We already know the expected outcome in the first half-hour of the movie.

The film really has no where else to go emotionally but up… Bummer endings don't sell – especially during the Holidays.
The real downfall is watching Gerard Butler attempting to be a caring and sensitive human being. His performance is on par with a similar take in The Ugly Truth.  It just doesn't work here. His characteristics are basically the same, he still comes across as insincere.
– The only difference now is… Butler doesn't have to cover-up his Scottish accent.

  Frank Chris Jim Dave Nina Sam Howard Jennifer Kathleen  Avg. 
Playing For Keeps  C      D+   C+         D-      C+   C 

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