From the primary story arc to the midway mystery to the obligatory break-ups and make-ups, everything in The Bounty Hunter is extremely predictable. However, just because we know what will inevitably happen, it doesn’t mean the process can’t be entertaining. Thanks to Gerard Butler and Jennifer Aniston’s immediate chemistry, the film manages to mask many of its shortcomings and succeed as a romantic comedy. Unfortunately, the action, suspense, and murder mystery aspects don’t fare as well.
Milo Boyd (Gerard Butler) recently divorced his wife Nicole (Jennifer Aniston) and lost his job as a New York police detective. Now garnering little respect from the law and owing large sums of money for gambling mishaps, Milo attempts to make ends meet as a bounty hunter. His luck having all but run out, Milo finds a unique opportunity for payback when his ex-wife skips out on bail and he’s given the job of bringing her in. When he apprehends the feisty newspaper reporter, tempers fly – but so do the sparks –and what begins as a simple job turns into a wild chase, a desperate escape, and a chance at finding love once again.
So many films suffer in the villain department and The Bounty Hunter is no different. Our protagonists’ floundering marriage could have been conflict enough, but several side plots introduce bad guys who are neither interesting nor original in any way. Not only are they overly stereotypical, it appears that they are intentionally modeled that way; the actors cast don’t visually deviate from the expected and seem to always portray the same criminals in film.
While the film includes an abundance of lackluster antagonists, it also has the decency to embrace a wide range of supporting characters for additional comic relief. Jeff Garland’s brief appearance as Milo’s boss and his bail bond secretary’s (Siobhan Fallon) cynicism are appreciated, as is Nicole’s mother’s (Christine Baranski) glib demeanor and creepy co-worker Stewart’s (Jason Sudeikis) misfortunes. They all provide amusement without infringing on the leads’ center stage sauciness.
The Bounty Hunter follows suit in the popular blending of romance with masculine settings and situations and while the verbiage keeps the innuendo high, the leading lady keeps her clothes on at all times (even the dancers in a strip club scene strangely refrain from showing off the goods). Unless you abhor the stars, the predictability, or the genre, The Bounty Hunter isn’t a bad escape for the reasonably indiscriminate or from Aniston’s recently dismal offerings.
– The Massie Twins (GoneWithTheTwins.com)