It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler are so pleasant in "The Ugly Truth" that it’s a shame to spoil their party. But toil and try as they do, the comedy bogs down in relentless predictability and the puzzling overuse of naughty words.
Once the movies were forbidden to drop the f-word at all, but in this one, it’s only an opening salvo in a potty-mouth bombing run. Heigl plays Abby, producer of the early morning news on a Sacramento station that is operated like no other station in the history of television. Anchored by a bickering married couple, the broadcast is tanking in the ratings, and so her boss forces Abby to bring in Mike Chadway (Gerard Butler), a macho local cable personality whose ideas about the battle of the sexes date back to about Alley Oop.
On his first appearance, he departs from his script, diagnoses the anchor as the victim of his control-freak wife and suggests they’ve probably stopped sleeping together. “This is great!” the station manager raves, despite that the that segment runs so long, it steps on the first five minutes of the network morning slot.
Abby is a raving beauty who of course can’t find a man, maybe because her standards are those of a perfectionist. A handsome young orthopedic surgeon (Eric Winter) comes within her sights, after she twists an ankle falling from a tree outside his bedroom window watching him dry off after a shower while she was trying to rescue her cat. That’s the sort of thing, wouldn’t you agree, that happens all too rarely in life?