Two Weeks Notice (2002) Movie Review

Two Weeks Notice (2002)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Sandra Bullock in Two Weeks Notice (2002)

Nearly too weak to Notice

Having spent months trying to stop the Wade corporation from demolishing landmarks, enthusiastic lawyer Lucy Kelson (Sandra Bullock - Murder by Numbers) finds herself in a strange position when the charming George Wade (Hugh Grant - About a Boy) asks her to become Chief Counsel for the Wade Corporation and in return they won't demolish a community centre she has been fighting to save. Having agreed it soon becomes apparent that George thinks of her as more than just an attorney as she ends up becoming more like his personal assistant and when it all gets too much she gives her two weeks notice. But when George employs the attractive June Carver (Alicia Witt - The Mistletoe Inn) as her replacement, Lucy realises that she likes George more than she realised and it maybe too late to say anything.

There is something about "Two Weeks Notice" which reminds me of a 1940s romantic comedy with its storyline about an attractive young attorney ending up falling for the smooth talking businessman who she has been battling over destruction of old buildings. It's the sort of storyline which would have been perfect for the likes of Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn and I am pretty sure that if "Two Weeks Notice" had been made in the 1940s with those 2 stars it would have ended up being more than the average movie which "Two Weeks Notice" ends up being. There isn't anything that wrong with the movie and the pairing of Sandra Bullock and Hugh Grant works to a point, but there is also nothing which makes it stand out, no spark of chemistry or really funny scene which stays with you once the movie has ended. So whilst "Two Weeks Notice" is amusing and fun to watch it ends up being just another romantic comedy which has two stars playing to type.

Hugh Grant in Two Weeks Notice (2002)

The problem with "Two Weeks Notice" is that it's impossible to ignore that it is simply routine to the point you could say it was paint it by numbers. Everything about the storyline from Lucy and George being enemies to becoming friends is all incredibly obvious and it doesn't take a genius to know that by the time the movie ends they will end up in each others arms. There is absolutely no creativity when it comes to the formula and so it follows the series of peaks and troughs that can be seen in countless other romantic comedies. And whilst frustrating that there isn't some new twist to switch things up it still works as a vehicle for the humour.

Talking of the humour "Two Weeks Notice" ends up a mixed bag as there is plenty of gags which are genuinely funny but there are just as many scripted gags which end up feeling forced. The whole intro which sees Lucy wrapping herself around a demolition ball to stop a building being destroyed is one of those gags which is forced as is a later scene where she flips out with a stapler. But then you have the fun of Lucy becoming jealous of her replacement, June, which spills over in to a violent tennis game. In a way the humour has as many peaks and troughs as the storyline as for every fun gag there will be a weak one following on its heels.

What is very evident is that "Two Weeks Notice" relies heavily on the likeability of its two stars and the stereotypes that they play. So what we get is Sandra Bullock yet again delivering the plucky, scatty and accident prone young woman who at times struggles to know what she wants but is likeable. And opposite her we have Hugh Grant playing the posh talking charmer with an eye for an attractive young woman. And it sorts of work because both Sandra Bullock and Hugh Grant deliver comfortable, enjoyable performances even if their characters could have been plucked out of any of their other movies. But you also have to say that there is barely any chemistry between them or at least not when it comes to "Two Weeks Notice" being a ROMANTIC comedy.

What this all boils down to is that "Two Weeks Notice" is very much your run of the mill romantic comedy which pretty much relies on Sandra Bullock and Hugh Grant delivering likeable performances in stereotypical roles. It is all simply routine and obvious with nothing about it which is overly memorable but it is a pleasant, fun movie to watch.