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Film review: Second Act is an exercise in vacuity, says Rashid Irani

Jennifer Lopez plays a middle-aged woman trying to break out of her dull life, a storyline that may sound like it has potential but, in this case, goes nowhere.

movie reviews Updated: Jan 11, 2019 21:24 IST
Rashid Irani
Rashid Irani
Hindustan Times
Jenifer Lopez,Popstar,Working Girl
Jenifer Lopez does her best, and pulls off a spirited performance, but she’s given very little to work with.
  • Direction: Peter Segal
  • Actors: Jennifer Lopez, Leah Remini
  • Rating: 2 / 5

Traipsing through familiar rom-com turf — think Working Girl meets Maid in Manhattan — Second Act casts Jennifer Lopez (still drop-dead gorgeous at 50) as a middle-aged workaholic aspiring to break out of her dead-end job.

Her wish is granted after her tech-savvy godson secretly embellishes her resume, which helps her secure a management-level position at a Madison Avenue cosmetics firm. So far, so groovy.

Soon enough, though, the romance with her long-time boyfriend fizzles out. He wants to start a family but she isn’t sure about having children.

Peter Segal’s direction is superficially slick, but the plot is vapid and the predictably roseate resolution, cloying.

A subsequent revelation about a teenage pregnancy and the daughter she gave up for adoption will leave viewers gasping in disbelief. The predictably roseate resolution is even more cloying.

On the other hand, the script never degenerates into vulgarity and Peter Segal’s direction is superficially slick.

The cannily assembled supporting cast includes old-timer Treat Williams as the too-good-to-be-true big boss, and sitcom stalwart Leah Remini as the heroine’s sassy bestie.

In effect, despite the spirited presence of Lopez, Second Act is just another exercise in vacuity.

First Published: Jan 11, 2019 21:19 IST