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How Do You Know [Blu-ray]

3.2 out of 5 stars 214 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From legendary director/writer James L. Brooks comes a humorous and romantic look at the “How Do You Know” question. When everything she’s ever known is suddenly taken from her, Lisa (Reese Witherspoon) begins a fling with Matty (Owen Wilson), a major league baseball player and self-centered ladies man. Before their relationship takes off, Lisa meets up with George (Paul Rudd) a straight-arrow businessman facing his own serious issues, both with his father (Jack Nicholson) and the law. Just when everything seems to be falling apart it doesn't.

Special Features

Interactive Script Gallery
Commentary with Filmmakers
Select Scenes Commentary with James L. Brooks and Owen Wilson
Deleted Scenes Commentary by James L. Brooks
Optional Commentary with James L. Brooks
"The George"
Blooper Reel
Extra Innings
A Conversation with James L. Brooks and Hans Zimmer

Product Details

  • Actors: Owen Wilson, Paul Rudd, Jack Nicholson, Reese Witherspoon
  • Directors: James L. Brooks
  • Producers: James L. Brooks, Julie Ansell, Paula Weinstein, Laurence Mark
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Blu-ray, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: French, Portuguese, English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Portuguese, Spanish
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Audio Description: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 22, 2011
  • Run Time: 121 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (214 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004IY1AW6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #85,731 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "How Do You Know [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
My wife and I really enjoyed "How Do You Know." The script itself was slightly on the bland side, as others have noted, but the film itself is redeemed by some great performances and excellent direction and editing. For us, it generated consistent laughs and smiles throughout the film, as well as lots of undercurrents and multileveled themes to ponder after we left the theatre.

What really made the film work for me were the performances of the Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson and Paul Rudd. The Director / Writer (James L. Brooks) spends lots of screen time doing closeups on the faces of these three performers, allowing us to see the interplay of complex emotions on their faces as they wrestle with the dilemmas they are confronting. This would not have worked unless Mr. Brooks was able to coax finely tuned and believable emotions out of these excellent actors; and he is superb at doing so.

The flip side of this is that it takes time to allow these emotions to play out, so the film seems slower paced than films that are more concerned with situational comedy (and perhaps then less concerned with exploring the emotional depths of relationships).

Combined with this are some really hysterical scenes. Owen Wilson has long been known as a great comedic sidekick, and that well-honed character he always seems to play - bumbling, shallow, narcissistic and clueless - plays well in this film. Yet, even his character plumbs emotional depths I've never seen from him in other films. Paul Rudd, who I am not as familiar with, also did a great job. Yet, what makes the film shine is Reese Witherspoon's performance. You really connect-with her character. The film ends predictably, and was foreshadowed from the very start.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
How Do You Know opened in late 2010 to atrocious reviews, arguably worse reactions from audiences, and went on to become a box-office bomb coming nowhere near recouping its $120 budget. This budget has been oft-discussed, as $50 million went for star salaries alone and you'd be hard-pressed to find the other $70 million onscreen. This is the sixth film to be written and directed by James L. Brooks, who works almost exclusively in romantic-comedy and writes some of the most charming, intelligent dialogue one would be pressed to find in the genre. Is it one of his best films? No. But a bad romantic-comedy by Brooks is far better than the average, mass-produced rom-com that hits the multiplex on what seems like a weekly basis. I have issues with the film like all viewers do, but the amount of criticism it's received is unfathomable to me; being a romantic-comedy, it really is better than 90% of the dreck that's released in this genre.

Reese Witherspoon is Lisa, a 31-year-old softball player who is adored by her teammates but sees her career coming to a halt because of her age. Trying to start a new phase in her life, she begins dating Matty Reynolds (Owen Wilson), a clueless, womanizing pro-baseball player whose insensitivity she finds oddly charming. George Madison (Paul Rudd) is a young executive who discovers that he's the target of a federal investigation and is informed by his father Charles (Jack Nicholson) that he could be facing a possible indictment. As this is a romantic-comedy, you know that George meets Lisa at this unique crossroad in their lives and falls for her, leaving her torn between Matty and George. Kathryn Hahn co-stars as George's pregnant assistant Annie, who is quite the scene-stealer among these big marquee names.
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5 Comments 14 of 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Apparently it's a bad thing that "How Do You Know" takes the time to develop characters who have real wants and needs, who aren't afraid to be uncertain about things, let it's plot unfold naturally, let it's scenes linger and take their time; because "How Do You Know" was hated by critics and audiences a like. This baffles me. This wonderful picture from the great James L. Brooks does, for me at least (and apparently I am alone on this one), everything a great film should do. It engaged me emotionally and intellectually, I related to the characters and their problems, I found it to be human and funny and their struggles were timely. Brooks' film is an ode to those who are just off center of making their lives work and I found it next to irresistible. Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson and Jack Nicholson are all terrific here, delivering witty, honest and well rounded performances. The film is nicely directed, beautifully shot and attentively written. In a year when films have to be all high concept and surreal images trump character and motivation (yes, I'm looking at you "Inception" and "Black Swan"), "How Do You Know" is a lovely breath of fresh air. I just can't fathom how people can dislike such an honest and moving picture, but apparently, it's very easy.

If you are a fan of James L. Brook's pictures or are someone who likes a good, natural, character study, I really recommend you check out "How Do You Know".
9 Comments 60 of 75 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Now I know I'm out of step with current preferences. The average comedy today seems to consistently feature emotionally immature, narcissistic boy-men, and women who are trying to be tough at work but are insecure and confused about how to have any kind of grown-up relationship. The characters are virtually interchangeable from one movie to another. Since I'm an avid movie-lover, I'm not that hard to please, but am too often left cold or indifferent.

Then along comes this supposedly "bad" movie, which I finally Netflixed since I like the director. It has characters I DID care about, and I wanted to give it 41/2 stars in contrast to what's out there. Life thas thrown Lisa and George some curve balls (pun intended), but they are BOTH striving to be caring and self-responsible people (how retro!) and figure out how to move on with their lives. I loved the performances of Reese and Paul (just watching their faces change was delicious), and I agree with another reviewer that Owen found a deeper layer too. Jack was Jack. I was particularly taken with the attention paid to supporting characters and the unique friendship George had with pregnant and emotional Annie. The hospital scene was moving and funny, worth watching the movie to see. But there were many little treats along the way. e.g. 1) Lisa's attempts to rise above her pain with post-it-note slogans,like she did in baseball. 2) the power of silence at the restaurant (what, not even text messaging?) etc.

I am buying this movie, and hope they don't give up making little gems like this. My scales have already tipped to independent and foreign films, so Hollywood is way behind in the battle for my dollar. And just for the record, I see many movies in theaters and have a collection of THOUSANDS. And my friends pay attention to my opinions. There's a bigger market out there than 20-year-old males. Are you listening, Hollywood?
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How Do You Know [Blu-ray]
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