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Failure to Launch (2006)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Romance | 10 March 2006 (USA)
2:31 | Trailer
A thirty-something is still living with his parents until they hire an interventionist to help him graduate out of the house. That's when the fun begins.


Tom Dey
4,799 ( 1,261)
5 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Matthew McConaughey ... Tripp
Sarah Jessica Parker ... Paula
Zooey Deschanel ... Kit
Justin Bartha ... Ace
Bradley Cooper ... Demo
Terry Bradshaw ... Al
Kathy Bates ... Sue
Tyrel Jackson Williams ... Jeffrey
Katheryn Winnick ... Melissa
Rob Corddry ... Gun Salesman #1
Patton Oswalt ... Techie Guy
Stephen Tobolowsky ... Bud
Kate McGregor-Stewart ... Bev
Adam Alexi-Malle ... Mr. Axelrod
Gretchen Cleevely Gretchen Cleevely ... Gretchen the Veterinarian


At 35, Tripp has an interesting job, a hip car, a passion for sailing, and a great house - trouble is, he lives with his parents. They want him out, so they hire Paula, an "interventionist," who has a formula in these cases: chance encounter, get him to ask her out, involve him in a trauma, meet his friends and get their nod, delay sex, have him teach her something, then launch him. It's worked up to now, but this gets complicated when Tripp thinks she's getting too serious and one of his pals is attracted to Paula's deadpan, semi-alcoholic roommate, who's plagued by a mockingbird. Too many secrets may scrub the launch, and what if Paula really likes him? Who can intervene then? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


To leave the nest, some men just need a little push.


Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sexual content, partial nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


The roles of Tripp and Paula were written for Zach Braff and Amanda Peet. See more »


Obvious stunt double when Tripp is riding the bike - the stunt performer has a tattoo above his right ankle. See more »


[first lines]
Melissa: I just feel really close to you.
Tripp: You ARE really close to me.
See more »


Features Irma la Douce (1963) See more »


Fresh Feeling
by Mark Oliver Everett (as E) & Kool G. Murder (as Koool G Murder)
Performed by Eels
Courtesy of Geffen Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

User Reviews

Romantic comedy with a clever hook and some cute acting but not too much else!
6 August 2012 | by secondtakeSee all my reviews

Failure to Launch (2006)

Another decent but sometimes strained interference with love film. I can think of two more classic recent ones, "Hitch" and "Heartbreaker," and this doesn't rise to those modest heights.

The impressive star of the two leads is the lesser name, charming and gorgeous Matthew McConaughey, who is not just believable but also compelling (which is something different). Across from him is the Sex and the City mega-star, Sarah Jessica Parker, who is good, and who does the job as a would-be pretend girlfriend who really does fall in love. Or not. You'll see.

The whole hook is an obvious one--first the woman is hired to make the man fall enough in love with him that he'll finally move out of his parents house. Then she'll collect her fee and boogie. But no, we know from the get-go, as with any screwball comedy, that the two leads are destined to be together. But when one learns the other's secret, what true love there was goes on the rocks. This is exactly what the other two films (above) did, and I'm sure it's a burgeoning new genre.

What drags it down a bit are the side plots and side characters. Many of these are good or even terrific one way or another, but it's all patched together and a little lightweight and thin. The best of these is Parker's roommate, played with Oscar-worthy dreariness by Zooey Deschanel (who also appeared in "(500) Days of Summer"). But the sideshows of the mockingbird, the biting dolphin, and even the baroque arrangement with the t.v. monitors in the final scenes are all a little clunky. Good on paper, maybe, but in the end you have to make yourself enjoy the best of it all, which will make you laugh and have fun.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

10 March 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Failure to Launch See more »

Filming Locations:

Alabama, USA See more »


Box Office


$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$24,411,322, 12 March 2006

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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