The Rebound (2009) by The Critical Movie Critics

Movie Review: The Rebound (2009)

Catherine Zeta-Jones has undoubtedly crossed that threshold that separates the young from the old — no matter how many pilates classes she takes or face pulls she has performed. So it’s no wonder the spin on her latest romantic comedy The Rebound is that of an older woman hooking up with a much, much younger guy. It’s the natural progression of things before she gets penciled into nothing but old spinster roles.

To her credit though, she still carries herself damn well, so the concept of a young guy sniffing and prodding around her skirt isn’t totally out of the realm of possibility. She takes on the role of Sandy, a recently separated mother of two now encumbered with trying to find a job in the big mean city. To help, she needs a babysitter and, as luck would have it, working below her apartment in the coffee shop is a 25-year old good looking, college educated guy wasting away at a dead end job and feeling generally shitty about the cards dealt to him. This guy, named Aram Finklestein; yes, you heard it right — Aram Finklestein, is played by Justin Bartha.

As one would, or at least should, expect The Rebound roughly follows the same formula as every other romantic comedy that’s come before it: Girl sees guy as friend only; guy “innocently” builds strong relationship with girl and her family; girl realizes what she’s been looking for has been with her the whole time; guy and girl hook up; conflict erupts between couple; cue resolution — good or bad — at end of movie. But all is not lost; the film does have its moments. And most of them come about from Justin Bartha.

He takes his reserved, goofy but cute persona he’s perfected in many of his supporting roles (“National Treasure: Book of Secrets,” “ Failure to Launch“) and scaled it up to make a likable character that doesn’t make you want to puke from all his niceness. It’s a welcome change to see in a lead performance as so many of male leads in this genre nowadays are charming, cocky douchebags (think Matthew McConaughey). Bartha, if he plays his cards right can be the new Hugh Grant.

Zeta-Jones too, does an adequate job in her role as the cradle-robbing business woman. She appears comfortable in her character’s skin; I only wish writer/director Bart Freundlich made that skin more than surface deep. I found her cold and calculating, and exuding little warmth. After all, who hands over the keys to their apartment and their two children to a complete stranger just so they can go out on a blind date?

I should also think more could have been done with the ending of The Rebound than what was offered up — the feel good montage spanning four (or maybe it was five) years of time was completely out of place and thoroughly sappy. That notwithstanding, the movie is a cute middle of the road rom-com good for a late night rental with your significant other.

Critical Movie Critic Rating:
3 Star Rating: Average


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The Critical Movie Critics

I'm an old, miserable fart set in his ways. Some of the things that bring a smile to my face are (in no particular order): Teenage back acne, the rain on my face, long walks on the beach and redneck women named Francis. Oh yeah, I like to watch and criticize movies.

'Movie Review: The Rebound (2009)' have 14 comments

  1. The Critical Movie Critics

    October 13, 2009 @ 4:27 am Kevin Koss

    Bro, Catherine Zeta-Jones is only 40. She has another 10 years before she crosses that line that “separates the young from the old.”

    • The Critical Movie Critics

      October 13, 2009 @ 9:49 am General Disdain

      She claims she’s 40. I don’t believe it. If, however, she really is, she is an oooold 40.

  2. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 3, 2009 @ 4:23 am Tap Dance Mat

    I did not have the chance to watch the rebound. I am actually interested to check it out if i have time.

  3. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 4, 2009 @ 2:21 am Zetaclear Review

    I wonder what the movie rebound was.

    • The Critical Movie Critics

      November 4, 2009 @ 8:18 am General Disdain

      I wonder what the movie rebound was.

      Try reading the review.

  4. The Critical Movie Critics

    January 1, 2010 @ 11:58 pm Eric

    Buddy, you are craaaazy if you consider miz jones “old” she looks late 20s early 30s and damn fine.

    • The Critical Movie Critics

      January 2, 2010 @ 3:11 pm General Disdain


      If you think Catherine Zeta Jones looks to be in her late 20’s early 30’s then you need to see an eye doctor right away! Cosmetic surgery (I presume) has certainly helped to keep her from looking her age but there is no way she can be thought to look that young.

  5. The Critical Movie Critics

    January 6, 2010 @ 10:08 pm Pan

    I’ll be blunt, if you think Catherine Zeta Jones is too old or if you wouldn’t hit it… You’re gay. 40 isn’t really all that old. And life is too unpredictable as it is to let that kind of thing get in the way of being with a woman that exquisitely beautiful. And if you think she looks old you REALLY need your eyes checked.

  6. The Critical Movie Critics

    March 16, 2010 @ 11:56 pm Gra

    What’s with the debate over whether 40 is old or not. 40 is only ‘old’ if you havent hit high school yet. And I agree with Pan, if you wouldn’t take an opporuntity with CZJ you’re batting for the wrong team.

  7. The Critical Movie Critics

    April 11, 2010 @ 1:41 pm Colman

    OK, I get it. Horny guys debating over an attractive actress. How was the MOVIE? I would have to agree with most of General Disdain’s criticisms. However, I wish the analysis was a little deeper than the plot of the movie. I found that it had strong undertones which caused the viewer to think on a deeper level. For instance, as corny as it sounds, it poses the age old questions “what is the purpose of life?” and “how/why should one go about finding the answer for himself/herself”? I found that the movie does a fantastic job shedding light on these topics, as well of heightening the ambiguity of such questions.

  8. The Critical Movie Critics

    August 24, 2010 @ 10:38 am chacha

    She is my all time favourite and it is good that she is slowly making that move roles more fitting for her age. Its take a lot of confidence to do that, especially in the industry that she is in. But as you said she does it with élan. And what a compliment you have given Bartha, the next Hugh Jackman. Wow, that surely is some accolade. Now, it is just a matter of time for him to be cast in the right kind of roles!

  9. The Critical Movie Critics

    September 10, 2010 @ 10:45 am Markos

    I have a question, did they still go out or date together in the end of the movie, or they separated??

  10. The Critical Movie Critics

    October 11, 2010 @ 4:42 pm Leslie

    What Catherine Zeta Jones old? I think she is beautiful and Michael Douglas pays her 3 or 2 million each year she stays marry to him! He is smart men to let that one get away.


  11. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 3, 2011 @ 5:49 pm Kayla

    Why have I not even heard of this movie? I know it’s older but I’ve always liked Catherine and I became a fan of Justin Bartha after the first National Treasure.


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