Catching Your Braff
The Ex
Review by Ross Anthony

Zach Braff has done well for himself in the TV world; his appearance in this film will no doubt draw fans off the couch and into theatre chairs. Myself, Iím more familiar with his film work in Garden State, which, in addition to a leading role, he also scripted & directed. Thatís a good film; heís quite likeable on screen there as he is in ďThe Ex.Ē

But, the title ďThe ExĒ is a bit misleading. The fellow (Jason Bateman) in question was actually more of an old friend/one night stand of Amanda Peetís character. His persistent pining for her, in part, becomes the central conflict of the film. Though it spawns a funny tit-for-tat rivalry, other important elements of the film fall victim to this conflict. For one, Zach is almost always the sympathetic character, but his interactions become vindictive, vengeful, selfish and blatantly mean. Thatís too bad, because he becomes nothing more than one of the fakers he most despises and we as viewers lose an important main character to root for. This dip into the dark side could have been pulled off if the filmmakers spent a little more time introducing Zach as more of a truth teller/loser. Add a strong moment of self-realization to the picture or at least better sell the idea that heís lowering himself to support his family. Else the film fails as a story, which is really too bad because itís quite sharp as a comedy. I also appreciated the careful added funny bits that (aside from the story Ė which didnít) kept the film feeling real.

Overall, I quite enjoyed the silly factor of the film -- and laughed a lot. But, I seriously lamented the guts and heart of the thing falling by the wayside.

This film screened at a Krikorian Theatre.

-- Book Contest --

  • The Ex. Copyright © 2007.
  • Starring Zach Braff, Amanda Peet, Jason Bateman.
  • Directed by Jesse Peretz.
  • Screenplay by David Guion, Michael Handelman.
  • Produced by Ted Hope, Anthony Bregman, Anne Carey, Marc Butan at Weinstein/This is That/2929ent.

Grade..........................B (2/4)

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Copyright © 1998-2019 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: or call 1-800-767-7186. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

Last Modified: Saturday, 12-May-2007 16:54:30 PDT