Friends with Benefits

File:Friends with benefits poster.jpg

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Friends with Benefits is an American romantic comedy film directed by Will Gluck, starring Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis. The film features an ensemble cast which includes Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone and Patricia Clarkson.[2]

Filming began on July 13, 2010 in New York City and wrapped in September 2010 in Los Angeles.[3] The film is distributed by Screen Gems and was released in North America on July 22, 2011.[4]

Dylan (Justin Timberlake) and Jamie (Mila Kunis) think it’s going to be easy to add the simple act of sex to their friendship, despite what Hollywood romantic comedies would have them believe. They soon discover, however, that getting physical really does always lead to complications. [5]

Jason Segel, Shaun White and Rashida Jones have cameo roles in the film.[9]

Screen Gems was given clearance to move forward with the title Friends with Benefits; Paramount Pictures dropped its original protest against the film after their director, Ivan Reitman, re-titled his film No Strings Attached. Friends with Benefits began production in July, 2010 in New York and Los Angeles. Complicating matters is the fact that NBC is planning a Friends with Benefits sitcom. Screen Gems stated that due to its production schedule, they don’t expect an issue to arise. [10]

Screen Gems chose to fast track the project for fear they would lose their title to the competing Paramount project. Will Gluck spoke about the frustration of comparing the two films by stating, "It's a real struggle for me, I wish there was more space between them. The thing that's irking me now is people are saying we're remaking No Strings Attached. We're not remaking it. The two movies were being made at the same time." [11]

Gluck stated that the concept of the story began with the idea that he wanted to work with Kunis and Timberlake. "There were a couple of actors I wanted to work with, so I adapted the original script and rewrote it for Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis. I wanted to do more of an adult movie about sex, too, and about relationships." [12] He compared the story to a classic Hepburn and Tracy production.[13] "It's as if they were making a movie in 2010. Having seen all the old movies, the characters know about the movies, too. I also got a great cast to support them. It's not just old films, but old stories. In life, everyone talks about old storylines and movies; "I know how this is going to end. This is going to end badly." But in movies, people are completely dense. They think they're the first boy to meet the first girl and wonder what's going to happen. So I tried to imbue our characters with a sense of history; "This is what happens in this situation; let's see how we deal with it." I think once you let the audience in on the secret that these characters know they're not the first persons in life going through this, there's a sigh of relief as opposed to, "Come on!"[12]

Director Will Gluck discussed the plot and his approach to dealing with a storyline with similar themes to previous films by stating: "Every romantic comedy over the last twenty years is about the same thing, right? The two characters in this movie played by Justin and Mila are in this generation like you and me where they’ve grown up on romantic comedies. They comment about these romantic comedies throughout the movie, and as they go through their storyline, they realize that they’re in a romantic comedy story — as two regular people who aren’t in a movie would comment on. They’re very cognizant that they’re in this story.....but they end up embracing the fact that they’re going through a romantic comedy moment." [14]

Timberlake added that he and Gluck held authorship of humor and tone on the movie. Stated Timberlake: "As a viewer, I don’t want to walk into a movie called ‘Friends with Benefits’ and see the PG-13 version. For me, you can’t have a movie like that without embracing what the title is.”[15]

The first red-band trailer debuted on November 5th, 2010.[16] The first theatrical trailer debuted on March 16th, 2011.[17] The trailer had a subsequent release on YouTube and attracted over a million views in 48 hours making it YouTube's second most watched video of the day and the most viewed video in the category of "film" around the globe.[18] PSA videos were created to help promote the film through Facebook and Twitter. Timberlake and Kunis also landed on the cover of Elle magazine in support of the film. [19][20]

Critical reviews

The film has received generally positive reviews from critics. The Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 70% of 83 critics have given the film a positive review, with a rating average of 6.7 out of 10.[21] Among Rotten Tomatoes' "Top Critics", which consists of popular and notable critics from the top newspapers, websites, television and radio programs, the film holds an overall approval rating of 66%, based on a sample of 32 reviews. The site's consensus is that "Friends with Benefits adds nothing new to its well-worn rom-com formula, but the chemistry between Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis is almost enough to carry the movie by itself." Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average score out of 0–100 reviews from film critics, has a rating score of 62 based on 31 reviews.[22]

The New York Times film critic Manohla Dargis said although the setup is familiar Friends with Benefits is a breezy, speedy and funny comedy with a nicely matched Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis.[23] While Roger Ebert praised the movie for good dialogue that is well delivered at a fast clip, with the movie making it clear Timberlake and Kunis are the real thing when it comes to light comedy. [24]Peter Debruge of Variety found the story to be too predictable and benign as everything that’s come before, but also complemented the cast stating that Kunis is a natural with comedy, while Timberlake exudes the kind of star wattage that put Will Smith on top.[25]

Soundtrack

Friends with Benefits: Original SoundtrackSoundtrack album by Various ArtistsReleased July 19, 2011 Genre Soundtrack Label Madison Gate Records

The soundtrack for Friends with Benefits was released on July 19, 2011.[26]

[edit] Track listing

No.TitleLength1. "Magic Carpet Ride (Philip Steir Remix)" (Steppenwolf) 3:29 2. "L.O.V." (Fitz and The Tantrums) 3;41 3. "Booty Call" (G. Love & Special Sauce) 3:28 4. "New York, New York (FWB Remix)" (Ray Quinn feat. Ultra Love) 2:20 5. "Boys Don't Cry" (Grant-Lee Phillips) 3:47 6. "Such a Colorful World" (Max & Simon) 2:14 7. "Satelite" (Peter Conway) 3:45 8. "Let a Woman Be a Woman (And a Man Be a Man)" (Dyke & the Blazers) 3:12 9. "At the Window" (Double 0 Zero) 3:50 10. "Love's Gonna Getcha" (Tal & Acacia) 3:05 11. "Jump" (Kris Kross) 3:17 12. "This Too Shall Pass" (Rogue Wave) 6:13 13. "Tightrope" (Janelle Monáe) 4:25 14. "Take a Bow" (Greg Laswell) 3:59 15. "Closing Time" (Semisonic)

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  1. ^ "Friends with Benefits (2011)". Boxoffice Mojo. July 21, 2011. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=friendswithbenefits10.htm. Retrieved July 21, 2011. 
  2. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (May 4, 2010). "Kunis joins Timberlake in Benefits". Variety. http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118018733.html?categoryid=13&cs=1&ref=vertfilm. Retrieved June 12, 2010. 
  3. ^ "Friends with Benefits first filming location in NYC". OnLocationsVacations.com. July 12, 2010. http://www.onlocationvacations.com/2010/07/12/friends-with-benefits-first-filming-location-in-nyc. Retrieved July 17, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Friends with Benefits". ComingSoon.net. August 18, 2010. http://www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=64847. Retrieved August 18, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Friends with Benefits Official Website". June 29, 2011. http://www.fwb-movie.com/site/. Retrieved June 29, 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f Siegel, Tatiana (July 13, 2010). "A Rod goes from the Big Leagues to the big screen". Variety. http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118021649.html?categoryid=13&cs=1&ref=vertfilm. Retrieved July 13, 2010.
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