Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston star in the charming and unpredictable comedy The Break-Up. After two years together, Gary and Brooke's relationship seems to have taken a comical wrong turn on the way to happily ever after. Now the break-up is on, the lines have been drawn, and their honest feelings for each other are coming out. Get ready for an all-out war of the exes in this fun date movie that's hilarious and heartfelt.
If you ever want a complete Cliff's Notes interpretation of a movie, get Vince Vaughn to do the commentary. The actor (and in this case, producer and writer of the story) painstakingly explains the meaning behind every story decision, bit of dialogue, and sidelong glance in the movie ("See, he plays video games because it's comfortable for him--he loves to have control."). Jennifer Aniston joins him on the commentary, but has little to say but agree with his nonstop play-by-play. Gossipmongers looking for any extra chemistry indicating the Vaughniston romance will be disappointed, though Vaughn wisely makes no reference to his past dating history with co-star Joey Lauren Adams, who plays Aniston's best friend. Only director Peyton Reed, in a separate commentary track, makes an allusion: that he was hesitant about sending Aniston a script called The Break-Up
in the middle of her divorce from Brad Pitt.
There's clearly a fondness for the city of Chicago (where the movie is set), the subject of a feature hosted by the Three Brothers (the fictional tourism business run by Vaughn's character). Castmates Cole Hauser and Jon Favreau also pitch in to showcase famous Chicago haunts. There's also a behind-the-scenes doc on the Tone Rangers, the a capella group formed by John Michael Higgins in the movie, a number of extended scenes and outtakes, and a silly "alternate ending" that thankfully, stayed alternate. But the best feature is the unedited footage of Vaughn and Favreau riffing various takes during a bar scene. Watching it can get tedious after the eighth go-around, but fans of the pair (who co-starred in Swingers and Made) will be fascinated watching them organically grow a hilarious scene through improvisation. --Ellen A. Kim