Journalist Andie Anderson (Kate Hudson) works at Composure Magazine as the “How to” woman, though she is desperate to report on more significant matters. Her next column becomes “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days”, which requires her to date a guy and use every trick in the book to get him to dump her before the 10 days is up.
Benjamin Barry (Matthew McConaughey) is an advertising executive looking to land a huge diamond campaign. He makes a bet with his boss and two of his co-workers that he can get a woman to fall in love with him in 10 days… if he wins, he gets the campaign. His coworkers already know about Andie’s new column and deliberately chose her for Ben. When he comes onto Andie at a party, she decides he’s the perfect guy for her column.
I had not seen this movie in a very long time so it was quite fun to watch again. I asked myself quite a few times if it had always been so cringe-y, but I suppose that’s part of its charm. Kate Hudson really goes for the jugular where it comes to an obsessive, obnoxious girlfriend who uses baby talk and moves her things in way too soon. She interrupts Ben’s poker night, forces him to miss the end of an exciting NBA playoff game, and covers his bathroom in pink and feminine hygiene products. She even puts together a photo album full of creepy photos to foreshadow their future together. But, while disturbed and annoyed, Ben doesn’t do the sane thing… he doesn’t break up with her!
As awful as some of these scenes were in terms of secondhand embarrassment, I did find them pretty damn amusing. How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days is from the era of ridiculously plotted rom-coms, but that’s part of what made – makes – them so fun.
Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey have great chemistry and while the majority of the film is Andie acting batshit crazy, we do get some genuine, authentic interaction between the two characters in the final act when Ben takes Andie home to meet his family. This is where Andie and Ben drop the bullshit – during a game of Bullshit, no less – and start being real with each other. As fun as it was to watch their chaotic relationship begin, I felt a sense of relief when that finally came to an end and the real love story began. Director Donald Petrie does a nice job at giving us enough time to see them together as they truly are before the conclusion, so the actually falling in love part of the movie doesn’t seem rushed.
Petrie is a director who is a bit hit and miss for me. I loved Mystic Pizza but really hated Little Italy. Thankfully How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days strikes a balance somewhere in between those two movies for me. I don’t think it’s a perfect rom-com, but let’s face it, it’s going to probably end up on top ten lists for a lot of rom-com lovers out there. There’s just something about it that makes it entertaining and watchable, despite how messy it really is.