Dresses’ embraces long-lost love story

Katherine Heigl certainly knows how to pick ’em. Refusing to drop the ball, she sustained the momentum produced by last year’s smash Knocked Up and followed the wind wherever it took her: another romantic comedy of sorts. This time it’s from the screenwriter of The Devil Wears Prada, so viewers already know they can look forward to a good, solid plot structure, well-developed characters and a wit so biting they might want to skimp on the popcorn. Just this time.

Admittedly, 27 Dresses is a chick flick, through and through, at least much more so than KU. After all, its primary focus is the wedding. There is more to it, however, such as sibling rivalry (always fun), rampant jackassery in the workplace (who can’t relate?) and love. Who said "love" was off limits anyway? But don’t brush it off just yet.

In August, TIME Magazine ran a piece titled "Who Killed the Love Story?" devoted to our apparent and increasing disenchantment with anything having to do with the four letter word. At the risk of sounding cheesy, you’d think the world would have had enough of silly romantic comedies, but I look around me and I see it isn’t so.

The article defends the prevalent emotion and reminds us that not much more than 10 years ago, we – all of us – made Titanic the most gargantuan moneymaker Hollywood has ever seen. The timeless theme has captured our imagination for as long as we can remember, but only fairly recently have the screwball kinds of stories become insufferable and loathsome. We all liked There’s Something About Mary, right? It, like 27, is nothing more than a warm, sweet center surrounded by a little obnoxious candy coating.

In the case of 27, though, said obnoxious candy coating is somewhat diluted, allowing the warm, sweet center to really shine. This story of love is so far-fetched and, in fact, charming, that if green-lighted in another time and place, Heigl’s role could have likely gone to a different Katherine (let’s say Hepburn) and become a solid classic. In this day and age, however, it will likely be shrugged off without much thought with the unfortunate label of "romantic comedy" – to add insult to injury.

Let’s take another look at Heigl. It sure has taken a little while, but it looks like she may have found her calling. Through the 1990s she had a slew of movie credits to her name that never seemed to add up in a big way. After that, she discovered television, where, with two hit series, she has pretty much become a household name. In many U.S. homes, the consequence for interrupting Grey’s Anatomy is death by stoning. With every passing role, it seems that she is bringing herself ever closer to being coined a sort of modern day Lucille Ball. Go ahead. Say the new red hair is a coincidence. I dare you.

The only difference is Heigl is moving on; for her, life after television is quite possible. With KU, she demonstrated that she has the balls to lead the cast and rise to the occasion. She has proven herself as a fearless comedienne and all of that carries on to 27 Dresses.

Admittedly, it’s not the once-in-a-blue-moon raunchfest with a heart that was able to appeal to and register with just about every demographic, but Heigl’s latest is just that. She’s movin’ on up.

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