LAKE OCONEE — “Playing for Keeps” is so bad that even the Lifetime Channel (surely) would find it undeserving for broadcast. Clearly the demographic is divorced moms burning for love from a “hunkalicious” soccer player (George Dryer played by Gerard Butler). If that is what they wanted to please, they should have had the Scot whip off his bath towel and dance the fandango like a cheap middle-aged member of the Chippendales. Perhaps there would be some value for the ticket buyers, instead they must settle for empty-headed, sloppy, sanitized chick-porn.
I suppose I must gather, from the movie, women with children in suburban Virginia are sex-starved and more than willing to act the fool throwing themselves, salivating and panting, in the path of a brogue-speaking divorcee with a six-pack a-bulging.
Dryer is washed up; his soccer days are in the past. His hard-loving, hard-living days are gone too and all that is left for him is to reconnect with his former wife Stacie (Jessica Biel) and their son, Lewis. So he travels to Virginia and coaches his son’s team. Cue the women (Judy Greer, Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones…and all the extras) to drool.
George was a hedonist in his youth, I suppose. Now he is broke and lonely and sad. Oh, boo hoo!
He made poor and irresponsible choices, but it helps he has a sexy accent and a burley chest and finally wants to become a man. And if he were not so good looking and spoke with an accent that didn’t have a whiff of Sean Connery, I suppose the ladies would simply shrug shoulders and ask George the direction to toilet seats?
Frankly, this man-child’s late trip to maturity ought not to be admired, so the writer created Carl (Dennis Quaid) to play a Rich Dad who is a philanderer and thinks he can buy people with cash and cars, which is usually true, especially in Hollywood where people can be bought for cash and cars to star in tripe like “Playing for Keeps.”