Close to Valentine's Day each year, Hollywood makes sure that there is some romantic fare in the theatres for the girls to drag their boyfriends to. 2011's No Strings Attached definitely fits the bill. An emotionally-stunted hospital resident (Natalie Portman) embarks on a strictly sex and no feelings attached relationship with her childhood acquaintance (Ashton Kutcher), despite the latter's claim that she will not be able to resist him. It takes little imagination to see where this story is headed. En route are typical complications (he has a famous father who never 'grew up' and has more inappropriate affairs than the son; she has an emotional family and feels like she has to be the only practical voice of reason to keep it all together), typical supporting characters (boy friends who think Portman is the ultimate lover; girl friends who think Kutcher is the ultimate boyfriend) and of course typical secondary love interests (a pedantic, neurotic female colleague who is obviously socially inept; a hard-working, financially stable male resident who is obviously full of himself). There are cliches galore throughout the story - and a bizarre, gold-digging British nymph is thrown in for good measure.
And yet, with a dash of funny situations, a handful of good dialogues and oodles of 'cuteness', the film is fairly decent. I definitely enjoyed it far more than last year's V-Day film, aptly titled Valentine's Day, which boasted a better star cast. In this one, Portman is convincing, Kutcher is awfully charming and Kevin Kline is brilliant as usual. Not a bad film to watch on DVD!