Kissing a Fool

The characters in this far from successful romantic comedy come close to being intriguing when they try to analyze one another's motives, but they never make you laugh at or care about their exploits. Bonnie Hunt plays hostess at a big wedding, where camera angles conceal the groom's identity from us until she finishes telling a pair of obnoxious guests the story of the love triangle that led to the betrothal. It seems mopey writer Jason Lee (Chasing Amy) set up his unlikely best friend, chick-magnet sportscaster David Schwimmer, with his book editor (Mili Avital). But once they got engaged, Schwimmer wanted Lee to try to seduce Avital so he'd know whether she'd cheat on him. The flashback tale insists that Avital and Lee are made for each other because they agree that having consumed gelati in Florence makes them cooler than Schwimmer, who raves about the pizza in Chicago. Yet a winding, methodical series of misunderstandings must occur before whoever is supposed to end up with whomever can do so. Written by James Frey and director Doug Ellin (1998).

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