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My Super Ex-Girlfriend

It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! No… It’s a Comedy!

We’re all too familiar with conventional superheroes, the alpha-male types who dutifully save the world from impending doom whenever some criminal mastermind comes calling. What if our superheroes were a little bit more human -- prone to jealous fits and self-doubt? What if they’d settle for being super, without all the heroic baggage? And what if such a superhero happened to be your bitter ex?

That’s the premise of Ivan Reitman’s My Super Ex-Girlfriend, and it is promising enough. No less promising is its cast: Uma Thurman as G-Girl, a hopelessly insecure superhero who’s more interested in spicing up her sex life than saving New York from an errant missile; Luke Wilson as Matt, the even-keeled boyfriend who can’t stomach her violent mood swings; Rainn Wilson as his delightfully insensitive sidekick; and, best of all, Eddie Izzard as the villainous Professor Bedlam, the first evil genius in movie history to moderate his own personal website. (“You can e-mail me on That’s all one word.”)

Despite that strong premise and spot-on cast, there’s nothing particularly super about this Ex-Girlfriend. To be fair, it delivers some surprisingly racy sight gags -- including one bed-breaking sex scene that leaves Matt gasping for dear life -- and a handful of clever one-liners, mostly courtesy of the naughty professor. But, simply put, there aren’t enough laughs here. The superhero genre is ripe for a satirical skewering, and Reitman, whose past credits include Ghost Busters and Legal Eagles, would seem the right man for the job.

He isn’t -- at least, not this time around. My Super Ex-Girlfriend is loaded with potential that is never realized, absurd scenarios that somehow fall flat. Yes, Matt finally gathers the nerve to break up with his tempestuous girlfriend, and yes, she hurls a hungry shark through his new girlfriend’s window. But where’s the punch-line? As a special effect, the shark is vaguely amusing in an obvious way, but that's all there is to the scene.

In the end, My Super Ex-Girlfriend is content to sputter along, relying too heavily on its cast to provide what its writers and director have not. And though Thurman and Izzard do their best, they cannot breathe life into a script with only one good idea. Stretched out over the course of 95 minutes, Ex-Girlfriend is an affable farce, sprinkled with moments of real ingenuity. Most of the time, though, it’s a formulaic comedy, unwilling or unable to venture into territory where no man -- or woman -- has gone before.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 Stars