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Movie Review: What Happens in Vegas

What Happens in Vegas: Sometimes the Formula Works

Perhaps it's because last week's Made of Honor left me with sub-zero expectations for this genre but whatever the reason, I really liked What Happens in Vegas. Sure, it's cheesy, there's a ton of overacting and absurd coincidences, but there's also a strange charm to this movie. And while I never thought there might be real chemistry between Ashton Kutcher and Cameron Diaz, two actors who I think have become like robots trying way too hard to impersonate human beings with their exaggerated goggle-eyes and faux indignation, there is, actually, something there between them.

These two leads are also seriously aided by an engaging, well-paced (if a little silly) plot that rarely drags, and supporting actors like Lake Bell (whose droll humor is great in small doses here, as opposed to the leading lady roles like the one she had in Over Her Dead Body) and The Daily Show's solid comedian Rob Corddry, both of whom help anchor the ridiculous moments with dashes of sarcasm and superb comic timing. It's one of those times when I just want to give the casting director a kiss for taking this project from so-so to a pretty good time. For more of my take on What Happens in Vegas,


Jack Fuller (Kutcher) and Joy McNally (Diaz) both live in New York City, but they're worlds apart. Joy is a high-strung trader on Wall Street while Jack is a lazy schlub who "works" for his dad's company. When Joy is dumped by her fiance and Jack gets fired by his dad for the last time, the two set off for Las Vegas to unwind with their respective best friends (Bell and Corddry). In a classic opposites-attract situation, they spend a wild night together, ending in drunken nuptials. Hungover the next day, they sheepishly decide to annul the marriage, but when Jack uses Joy's quarter in a slot machine and wins three million dollars, they enter into a legal battle over who should get the money.

Back in New York, the two are faced with a bitter judge who decides to grant the divorce only after they've lived together for six months and tried to make the marriage work. If they prove that they've tried, after the six months they will be able to get divorced and each will get half of the Vegas winnings. If either one slips up, however, the other one will receive the full amount of money. Of course, the unlikely lovebirds fight tooth and nail to one-up each other in their shared apartment and then attempt to sabotage each other's chances for receiving the entire amount, all the while growing fond of each other.

Though the initial big action takes place in Las Vegas, the majority of the story is set in New York, and the pacing of the film benefits greatly from these two giant, fast-paced cities where there's never really any time to get bogged down in lame attempts at sentimentality. In some romcoms, it's these long, drawn-out cheesy moments that choke the life out of something that might have just been lighthearted and sweet. It's hard to feel satisfied after those movies because it's like they strained to achieve something and didn't quite make it. After this movie, though, I felt satisfied and better yet — I felt uplifted.

To see the trailer and more videos from What Happens in Vegas check out

Photos courtesy of 20th Century Fox

Join The Conversation
nulls nulls 8 years
Watch it online in high quality :
any any 9 years
i just saw the movie and i really like it:D hehe i love the friends hater and tipper:D
crazylovevbug crazylovevbug 9 years
i saw this movie, personally, as a disapointment. contrary to buzzsugar's review, i felt ashton kutcher's and cameron diaz's chemistry off, and the humor was rather vulgar in places. just an opinion...
moxierain moxierain 9 years
I really want to see this. I love Cameron Diaz ever since she was in "There's Something About Mary" and I also loved her in The Holiday. She and Ashton actually look like they're a real couple. I can't wait.
fate125 fate125 9 years
I wasn't planning on seeing this movie but after reading your review, I'm definitely going to give it a chance this weekend!
Entertainment Entertainment 9 years
Ha! Angelica, I was pretty surprised myself!
Angelica Angelica 9 years
I'm shocked Buzz, but I have grown to trust you so I'll probably end up seeing it. Or at least Netflixing in a few months ;)
karisaamy karisaamy 9 years
I think this would be a good use for our 2 free movie tickets we have. Cute, funny, mindless.
em113 em113 9 years
I'm glad to hear this. It doesn't look like an instant-classic but I thought it seemed worth one viewing. Nevertheless, I'll probably rent because there are so many movies out I still want to see.
ameliajc ameliajc 9 years
glad to hear this is good! the previews looked so cute. i'm glad it's something that actually lives up to the preview.
Juiceee Juiceee 9 years
Like I said in PopSugar, I watched this yesterday and it was definitely worth the money and time I spent. Me and my gal pal and another guy friend (yes a guy!!) enjoyed it so much we couldn't stay still in our seats and laughed every 5 minutes. It's basically the energy of Cameron and Ashton put together which makes this movie so great. Not to forget their bodies!!
fleurfairy fleurfairy 9 years
I think Cameron is underrated as an actress. I loved her in The Holiday and In Her Shoes.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
i'm actually looking forward to this movie - it's interesting to be honest. i'm not usually one for this type of a comedy but i like cam andi think that she and ashton will have good chemistry on the big screen. i can't wait to see how it does.
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