How Do You Know (2010) Poster

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xcharxcharx26 March 2011
From looking at the casting, you would immediately think this to be a romantic comedy, and I guess that's where it starts going wrong.. from people going in to see this movie, expecting a chick flick and being disappointed.

I believe the reason for the poor reviews of this movie are due to the fact that is has been advertised and delivered as a romantic comedy.

True, it is fit for the romance genre, comedy.. not so much. But as far as romantic drama's go, this is an excellent picture for the modernized crowd.

That's because it is so much more. It is ideal for viewing of a well- intended inspiring somewhat-romantic movie. Humour is few and far between for a comedy-seeking crowd, however for those who connect to the characters, the humour is purely intended for those devised from caring for the characters.

Reese Witherspoon has perfected the role of Lisa, this is the movie that I would beg girlfriends to watch, due to her total delivery of the character throughout the entire picture, which is something most girls and women can relate to (whether they've reached that hurdle yet or not).

Which is where I feel the script originated from, life lessons. The script of the movie is all relatable in one aspect or other. It's moving to view a capture of these 'life lessons' within a movie, and I think if a movie can deliver that, then they have succeeded in making a good movie. Although the writing could have been sharper, better presented and wittier, it was decent enough for one to be indulged in the plot.

Paul Rudd, I thought, was a fantastic casting. Again, writing could of been better for a few of his lines where comedy was intended and some of his reactions.. but still I found him to be excellent and I enjoyed watching him.

Nice to see Jack Nicholson again, (huge fan of One flew over the cuckoo's nest!), his part was suitable if not a little long winded. I felt (again) wittier writing would have improved his character and performance hugely, however he delivered his part.

And Luke Wilson.. okay so we all know what kind of movie's he's known for now, and fair enough, he was a good casting for the part. My only itch is I'd like to see him doing more roles similar to Hutch, ala Starsky&, dry detective types.

Moving on, as said above, this is not a movie to make you lol or rofl, merely a movie to be enjoyed from watching these character's journey of self-revelation's throughout.
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How do you know this should not have been made?
David Ferguson19 December 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Greetings again from the darkness. How about a little effort, folks? Writer/Director James L Brooks and Jack Nicholson have teamed up for three far superior films prior to this. Terms of Endearment, Broadcast News, and As Good As it Gets are all insightful dramadies that bring real life into relationships. This is billed as a Rom-Com, but the romance is distant and lame, and the comedy is all but non-existent.

The very talented Paul Rudd plays George, son of Charles (Nicholson) who is the target of a federal investigation after his father sets him up by falsifying corporate financial documents. The problem is George is a really nice, honest guy and Charles is a lying scumbag who would throw his son to the federal wolves.

In a seemingly unrelated story, Reece Witherspoon plays Lisa, a very talented softball player with an incredible track record and evidently serious skills. She gets cut from the Olympic team because of her advancing age (she will be 31 at the next Olympics). Lisa is dating Matty, played by Owen Wilson. Matty is a $14 million per year major league baseball player, who is also a player off the field.

Everyone in this story is so very nice, but screwed up in their own way. That's actually a hopeful start. So one thing leads to another and George falls for Lisa. Lisa moves in with Matty, who lives in the Charles' building. Lisa then moves out. George is always there for Lisa while her life is in shambles. George's life is in shambles too, but all he cares about is Lisa. Any guess how this ends up? Of course you know. This script is not built for surprises. Or romance. Or comedy.

The bulk of the comedy comes from a very pregnant Kathryn Hahn as Anne, whose life is also a bit of a mess. She is an unmarried, pregnant assistant to George, who worries about him, her and everything ... but she has such a big heart that she bakes and labels multiple dinners for George.

Anyway ... the best part of the film is that we never get subjected to Owen Wilson throwing a pitch or Reese Witherspoon actually playing softball. There is so much talent associated with this film, but it definitely proves the point that the heart of a film is not in the direction or the acting, but in the script. For a similar story line, but far superior film, go re-watch When Harry Met Sally for the eighteenth time. It has comedy and romance and a worthy script.
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Enjoyable fluff
herbqedi17 January 2011
I am very critical of slow pacing but did not find this comedy the least bit slow. As one who works on Wall Street, I can tell you that people like George actually do exist (promoted to a position of authority due to nepotism, but set up for a fall because he actually has ethics). I thought the way they set things up with the phone call by Reba, the pragmatic selfishness of his current girlfriend, and the non-date date worked well together and was plausible enough within context to be enjoyable. I also thought the relationship between jock-player (Wilson) and over-the-hill jock Witherspoon was sweet and funny in its own way.

However, Kathryn Hahn steals every scene she's in as Rudd's personal assistant who hates what's going on and is also a single mom-to-be. And her scene in the hospital alone was worth the price of admission to me. The ending was also well handled. This is the best Paul Rudd performance I have seen since The Shape of Things after many bad ones in-between. Witherspoon was fine even though she didn't seem to have sizzling chemistry with Rudd - she was wonderful with Wilson. The cameo by Shalhoub as a psychiatrist was hilarious. And Mark-Linn Baker was appropriately cowering as the corporate lawyer. Nicholson was fine - he felt the part even though he could have played it in his sleep. Not one of his best, but more than adequate.

So, is this an original and ground-breaking film? No. Is it a highly enjoyable romantic comedy with good supporting performances and funny scenes? Yes!
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Very good and not appreciated enough
Johnny-1133 May 2011
I was expecting to be very disappointed with this film because I'd heard that most people disliked it. I really really liked it. I think that audiences these days have to have a joke every 30 seconds to be entertained. Maybe audiences feel short changed if there isn't a huge obvious wrap up off the plot at the end of the film. I liked that everything wasn't black and white in the film. There are many unanswered questions. The characters' intentions and feelings weren't absolutely clear. That's what I loved about it.

It's sad that so many people disliked this film, but I think it's very courageous of James l. Brooks to write a film that pleased him and not have to pace it like most other "successful" Hollywood crap movies. This film makes you think unlike many other huge hit comedies these days.
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Wonderful movie and ridiculously underrated
billyweeds-113 January 2011
This is the best performance yet by the wonderful Paul Rudd, a return to form for Owen Wilson, and the first truly sexy turn by Reese Witherspoon, always an excellent actress but never this yummy heretofore. James L. Brooks has a skilled and expert hand with pace and performance, and the movie is funny and unusually thoughtful--too thoughtful, perhaps, for some of the ADD-afflicted people who post here. This is a worthy addition to the very short list of great romantic comedies, and one which will grow in reputation through the years. Jack Nicholson is committed and inventive--perhaps a bit over the top, but that's the only even slightly off-key note in the whole film. Bravo to all involved!
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Not as bad as they're saying.
bvallred20 December 2010
Okay, so call me crazy, but I would NEVER give a movie a one star rating unless it was absolutely miserable. Like if I would rather leave the theater and the $10 I spent on it than watch it. How Do You Know was not a one star movie. The only problems I saw with it were that it was a little long. I thought they could have cut some scenes out and not only gotten away with it, but made it a more enjoyable experience. Also, with actors like Paul Rudd and Owen Wilson (plus how it was advertised as a comedy) I was expecting to do a lot more laughing in the movie than I really did. Don't get me wrong, it was funny, but not as much as you'd expect. I think if you go to this movie knowing it's more of a romantic comedy than a typical Owen Wilson/Paul Rudd style comedy then you'll be pleasantly surprised. I really enjoyed the movie, I thought it was very clever and surprisingly uplifting and I thought it was definitely worth the money.
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Nice and unusual for big Hollywood movie
tapavko9 March 2011
I can't believe the low rating of this movie. I guess it's because it does not give you usual polished Hollywood story of romance: boy meets girl, girl has a boyfriend/fiancé who at first seems perfect but then turns out to be douche bag and/or evil and there steps in this new perfect guy, they kiss and live happily ever after, the end.

Here, both guys trying to get the girl are screwed up in some way or another. Boyfriend (Owen Wilson) is not a bad guy. He is not too sensitive, he sleeps around, but the point is he doesn't try to hide it. He is honest about himself. And throughout the relationship he tries to better himself and the relationship with his girlfriend (Reese Witherspoon). On the other hand the "new guy" (Paul Rudd) is depressed, has no job or money and is facing prison time. And at the beginning the girl he's chasing considers him weird. His slime-ball/businessman father (Jack Nicholson) I think just adds likability to Rudds character.

Also, what I like is there is no perfect ending. There is sort of a feel-good ending but it's not perfect. Although, for that you'll have to see the movie.
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Shame on you James L. Brooks, for shame!
ed_bardo13 March 2011
To prevent claims that I am negatively reviewing this film because I don't like this type of film, I start by saying I enjoyed many of James L. Brooks' earlier works such as As Good As It Gets or Terms of Endearment. Mr. Brooks has demonstrated his ability to put together a diverse and talented cast and bring them together focusing on the things that make all of us different. The writing brings everything together where the work stands on it's own and is as strong as the sum of it's parts. So what happened here??? This film is a painful and mind numbing experience in boredom, bad writing, bad chemistry and pure stupidity! I have watched many a film and rarely have trouble sitting through them. I found myself laughing and almost screaming at this movie to go somewhere! Is it deserving of one star? Maybe I am being too harsh? No, how can you take a movie with Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson and Jack Nicholson and basically throw away their talent by wrapping it around insanely boring and random dialog? The first few times the characters think they are saying something witty that makes no sense to where the movie isn't going, it is irritating. To sit through two hours of this torture is enough to drive one to drink! This movie had no exposure for a reason, avoid it! I am sure you have something better to do for two hours even if it is to watch episodes of I Love Lucy you have already seen.
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Don't waste your money
maureenrosullivan26 December 2010
This was a total waste of money. With such great actors I expected much more. I was so disappointed. There was not much of a plot. There was no spark between the actors. The best part of the movie was the pregnant secretary, who, all in all, had a very minor role. Her role is the only reason I gave this move a 2 rather than a 1. I love Jack Nicholson. I have loved every movie I have ever seen him in. I did not like him in this movie. I am amazed that he agreed to take on such a weak character. Reese Witherspoon is as cute as ever and Paul Rudd is is still the wholesome boy next door but even with these three actors, the movie was a total waste of time and money.
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Doing My Part to Save a Good Film
adltswimguy20 August 2012
When I first saw the trailer for "How Do You Know" I thought it looked like a promising rom com, but then I saw the initial reviews for it and steered clear away. It wasn't until my Uncle pushed it on me, "Didn't that tank?" "Yeah, but it's actually good!" I think the reason why this movie got such bad reviews is people expected the typical rom com (I did). What it is, is a REAL movie, with depth, great characters, smart dialogue, and the complexity of reality, with some jokes and a love story thrown in. Great writing, superb acting. Don't know what else to say. Found it intriguing that on further review, my "go to" critics didn't review this one. One of the better films I've seen this year. Would give it an 8, but to right a wrong, giving it a 10.
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True torture...
tiago_ad_meira15 March 2011
Now I know what Alex DeLarge felt at the hands of the British Penal System and its experimental aversion therapy...

The dialogues are out of key, the characters don't connect, the music is just a punch in the stomach... Any expectation built for this movie is rapidly consumed by the expectation that it ends soon... but it doesn't... Two whole hours of movie which seem more like five and will let any who tries to watch it as tired as Coach Mo after running the marathon...

If you're hopping for something in the lines of "As Good As It Get" with smart dialogues like "The Simpsons" then you're in for a disappointment.
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The definition of a bad movie
EL10 March 2011
If somebody asks me what "How do you know" is about, my answer would have to be "I don't know". Probably the writer/director doesn't know either. There's a girl (Reese Witherspoon), who's having a really bad day and is dating a completely idiotic guy (Owen Wilson), who's supposed to be funny I guess but totally isn't, and then there's a guy (Paul Rudd) and he's having a dreadful day as well and somehow the two meet and start pouring their souls out to each other, but in a boring-nothing-makes-sense kind of way. All Witherspoon was doing was looking hot in shorts. And it's a shame 'cause she can act. As for Rudd... I find him hilarious, a really talented comedian. But he can only be hilarious when somebody writes him a descent role. Like in "Friends" or in "Knocked Up". The only kind-of-okay moment he had in this movie was when he banged his head on a coffee table. He can do better. Oh, and did I mention Jack Nicholson was in this too? How is it possible, with a cast like this, to create an utter piece of junk? If you want to know you can watch this, but I really wouldn't recommend that you do...
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Heartwarming with Magical Moments
meganduffy20 December 2010
Warning: Spoilers
I'm kind of blown away to see that this movie did so poorly over the weekend. I saw it and enjoyed myself and I know others will too. It's not a flawless movie (but neither is Tron, and just about any other Hollywood movie out there) but it's fun and quirky with a lot of heart. Paul Rudd's performance is incredible and nomination worthy. Lesser known actor Kathryn Hahn (who apparently was actually pregnant during filming) is also a standout, and her scene with actor Lenny Venito towards the end of the film made my eyes water. There are some definite magical moments in this film that make up for it's flaws (such as the cheesy scene where Reese gives a speech to her teammates inside her apartment). It's most certainly not a 1 star movie and I hope it sticks around one more weekend so more people have a chance to see it!
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An under-appreciated film!
ehumphrey28 May 2011
Warning: Spoilers
I am finding it hard to understand why How Do You Know has received so many poor reviews. My husband and I are both PhDs (in the arts) and loved the film. We were pleased by subtle characterization and sensitive acting that showed us, rather than dictating to us, what to think and feel;we loved Brooks's tender approach to human foibles that allowed us to care for the characters, so that it matters to you what happens to them. Both the writing AND the acting were good, and the actors were well-matched to their parts, and to each other. Especially effective was the "conversion" of Lisa from a suspicion regarding whether mother/wife types could possibly be satisfied, as she witnesses, with her own eyes, the magic of fidelity and bringing new life into the world. Also nice was the way that the plot and subplot were intertwined, so that the "fabliaux" figures and their relationship informed the fates of the major characters. Bravo, and what a pity that this generation needs something more flashy!
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An A-list cast struggle with a Z-list script...
HarryTrident16 February 2011
Warning: Spoilers
I haven't walked out of a movie since the abomination that was 'The Next Best Thing' ten years ago. That was the first and only time a movie has been so appalling that I've had no other option than to flee. Tonight I came as close as I have ever been to walk out No. 2.

I'll give any movie a chance. Even if it's been mauled to death by the press, I like to make up my own mind. It is this open-minded attitude that has caused me to spend the last 2 hours watching 'How Do You Know.' A brief plot summary: Lisa (Reese Witherspoon) is in a bit of an emotional state after being dropped from the national women's softball team. She's having a bit of no-strings fun with Matty (Owen Wilson), a major league baseball star and all-round playboy. Lisa is also set up on a blind date with George (Paul Rudd), a businessman who is being investigated by the FBI over some kind of fraud. George's father and boss, Charles (Jack Nicholson) is tied into the same investigation and coincidentally lives in the same building as Matty. The inevitable love triangle follows. There's also a sub-plot involving George's pregnant assistant Annie (Kathryn Hahn).

I have nothing but admiration for the four main actors in this film. Reese Witherspoon is one of my favourite actresses and before today I hadn't seen her in a bad movie. Paul Rudd and Owen Wilson have both proved to be fantastic comedic actors over the past few years and Jack Nicholson is, well, a legend. So where did it all go wrong? There is no doubting the acting credentials of the cast, so in my opinion the blame has to rest with the shockingly bad script. Though saying that, the writer-director of this mess, James L. Brooks, has more than proved his worth in both film and television over the years. Perhaps he was just having an off day? The problem lies in the implausibility of pretty much everything that happens in this movie. The way the characters relate to each other, the way they talk - it's all so fake and completely unbelievable. I felt embarrassed for the four A-list stars who clearly struggled with the Z-list script.

In the first half of the movie, Lisa becomes very good friends with George. They first meet on a blind date, which does not go very well. They next have a chance encounter in the elevator of the building Manny shares with George's father. Next thing you know, they're best mates. For the rest of the movie, Manny goes from playboy sports star to emotional softie and Lisa spends her time running between him and George, suitcase in tow, fretting about what to do with her life. George ends up deciding to declare his love for Lisa, a woman he has met on approximately three separate occasions, but it comes at a price: If she loves him back, his Dad will have to go to prison for 25 years and if she doesn't, George will get 3 years himself (no, really, that actually is the plot). There's a baby and a marriage proposal involving the supporting character of Annie which should be applauded for doing nothing other than distracting from the abysmal main plot.

I'll remain a fan of Witherspoon, Rudd, Wilson and Nicholson - they're amongst the finest talent in Hollywood, but should all have strong words with their agents after this travesty. As for Brooks, let's hope his next work is more reminiscent of his 1997 masterpiece 'As Good As It Gets' than this garbage.

I've absolutely nothing positive to say about this movie, but am going to give it 1 out of 10 purely because I find Reese Witherspoon pleasing to the eye.
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Don't go, unless you need to sleep in a theater...
phane18 December 2010
This movie is incredibly boring. With a strong cast, all underused and nothing is remotely funny. I was on the verge of falling asleep during most part of the movie. The dialog is not engaging, nothing is.

It's quite sad to see all those good actors having nothing to do on screen. The chemistry between the actors was not believable, Jack had nothing much to do. I've seen Resse in much better movies, she is not a Legally Blonde here.

I wonder if it's even a love story, or even romantic, because it does not look like that. It's constant wining, not happiness, nothing.

Don't go... A waste of money.
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Sagi y20 July 2011
I was expecting an ordinary chick flick.

While it is still a chick flick, it's very touching and at the same time very funny! You'll only get what I mean by writing "...the same time..." after you've seen the movie.

One minute it's moving, and the other it's funny. Oh, and it's also smart (giving a new perspective on life).

This movie is a great experience!

All the great actors just make this movie even easier to fall in love with.

In one word: Great!
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These pieces don't come together
aharmas3 January 2011
Warning: Spoilers
James Brooks has given us some spectacular work before. There was real magic in the writing of both "As Good As It Gets" and "Terms of Endearment", with their respective relationships ringing true and heartfelt. Each character shining individually and in their interactions. Not of it happens in this film. It is as if everyone was working alone and never talked to each other, much worse, Brooks seems to have no control over them or generating something that has any coherence. Each of the parts here is very good, with Witherspoon and Rudd doing some fine work, and Nicholson trying to salvage whatever part he has been given, but overall the results are very disappointing.

What could have a sweet and intelligent story of second chances and lucky breaks turns out to be a long, verbose, and not very entertaining film, as each of the main actors struggle to keep the narrative going. The problem is not the complexity of the material but the unnecessary amount of dialog that Brooks has come up with to explain some rather simple dilemma. The best moments in the film, and there aren't many involve the limited verbal exchanges between two secondary characters when their baby is born, but watching Rudd and Witherspoon handle their strained conversation is at times painful and challenging for both them and us.

The problem with the dialog is that it doesn't ring true. People struggle with relationships and initial meetings, but eventually the rhythm changes and a more natural flow occurs. Here, everyone's pattern is the same. We can't tell one person from the other, and in the end, the film suffers.

One last thought: It could have been much better.
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A warm, enjoyable story
Bruce Jones18 December 2010
Tonight it was a rain-soaked, bone-chilling, blustery night and I wanted to find a warm comforting place to spend some enjoyable time. So, I took myself to the local theater. Of the week's new offerings I chose this film to see, I'll admit, based almost solely on my past experiences seeing films with the principal actors we see here. As it turned out, the film warmed me far more than the stingy heat in the theater. It was a very comforting presentation to enjoy on a holiday season night.

One can't say a great deal about the staging of a contemporary film. After all, it's not much of a challenge to capture the mundane surroundings we see every day. The film, then, needs something a lot more interesting injected into it to make it successful and this one succeeds marvelously. The plot concerning a down-on-his-luck businessman falling head-over-heels for a femjock who's just received the biggest disappointment in her life is just different enough to not be boring and interesting and fun enough to hold our attention. The director, James L. Brooks (who also scripted and co-produced), has an incredible track record for excellence as writer, producer, and director so it creates high expectations in a movie goer. He really delivers here with just the right nuance of sentimental warmth and comedy. Of course, he didn't do it alone, having some tremendous acting talent to lend a most competent hand.

Being me, I couldn't help but first notice the very talented, captivatingly beautiful Reese Witherspoon as Lisa, the athlete. Yes, I can even buy her as an athlete, something not every actress could carry off. She most ably, and with seeming ease, injected not only an unmistakable air of beautiful professional competence but a degree of class, physical grace and presence that is riveting to watch. It's hard to take your eyes off of her while she's on screen, and she doesn't disappoint for a single moment. Whether she's wearing a baseball uniform or elegant evening wear, she's convincing as whoever she attempts. You just naturally want to like her, to root for her to succeed and find that most elusive of dreams; happiness. Of course, as completely captivating as she is, she's not on screen alone, but surrounded by a lot of other great talents.

Everyone seems to like Paul Rudd; here as George. He's a likable everyman in the same sort of mold as Jimmy Stewart and his presence improves whatever he touches. He creates a character here that just makes you want to like him and hope he succeeds. Here, he's the down-on-his-luck businessman who is set up for a blind date with the effervescent Ms. Witherspoon. I love them as a couple. On screen, they're what a lot of people hope to be; good people who find a way through life with someone else. Of course, as films always do, there are stumbling blocks.

The first stumble is that Ms. Reese is first hooked up with a real character played by the wonderfully talented Owen Wilson as Matty, the professional baseball player. He is a happy and likable guy with a simple mind and simpler morals who just can't grasp how to treat a lady - or that he really has an incredible lady right there in front of him to lose. Fun ensues and these three, Witherspoon, Rudd and Wilson really do have fun on screen and carry us along for the ride. (NOTE: One can't help but notice the quite accurate depiction of the immense difference in the way the world treats highly successful athletes of both genders. While the males are showered with obscene amounts of cash and attention, the equally great, or even perhaps better, female athletes have to settle for little more than faint praise and a pat on the back.) I was also highly entertained by a wonderful supporting cast, led by none other than the legendary Jack Nicholson as Charlie, Rudd's father and playing as fine a slime-ball as ever graced the silver screen. Thank you, Jack, for giving me a villain worthy of disliking.

Now, add to this already fine mix the talent of Kathryn Hahn as Annie, Rudd's very pregnant assistant. She adds a real element of class to what otherwise may have been a mundane role. She really hits her stride in a scene with the great character actor Lenny Venito, as Al, her baby's co-producer. This pair have one of those screen moments that is so terrific it comes very close to overshadowing the main plot.

Other memorable performances came from Molly Price as Coach Sally (even though her part was small she shone) and a humorous John Tormey as the doorman and, last-but-not-least the always great Tony Shalhoub as a psychiatrist Ms. Reese almost visits. The short exchange between them is very fun to watch.

All-in-all it's a great film to take someone you love to during this holiday season.

By Bruce L. Jones
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One of the Most Deceptive Romantic Comedies I Have Recently Seen
Claudio Carvalho30 April 2011
In Arlington, Virginia, the supportive softball player Lisa (Reese Witherspoon) is cut from the national team by the coach since she is thirty-one years old and has lost her speed. She is upset and her friend Riva schedules a blind date for her with the Chief Executive Officer George Madison (Paul Rudd). However, George is committed to his girlfriend and he calls off their date. Out of blue, George receives a subpoena and finds that he is facing a process of security fraud and the company will not give legal support to him. Further, his girlfriend and friends abandon him. Meanwhile Lisa is upset and she dates the successful and womanizer baseball star Matty Reynolds (Owen Wilson) and sooner she moves to his apartment.

When Lisa stumbles with George in the elevator, they have a long conversation and Lisa feels divided between Matty and George. The bachelor Matty decides to change his behavior and promises a monogamous relationship with Lisa. George learns that his father Charles (Jack Nicholson) is the responsible for the fraud and he requests his son to assume the responsibility and spends three years in prison to save him. George tells his father that he is in love with Lisa and he will propose her; if she accepts, he will not accept to take the blame for the fraud.

"How Do You Know" is one of the most deceptive romantic comedies that I have recently seen, considering the cast with the names of Jack Nicholson, Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd and Owen Wilson that are wasted in a poor screenplay. The pointless story is illogical and uninteresting, with Paul Rudd performing a naive executive with the behavior of an intern or student; Reese Witherspoon performing a softball player with an erratic behavior that does not justify the profile of her character; and Owen Wilson completely lost in a dull character. The worst, there is no chemistry among these characters. The talented Jack Nicholson performs maybe the most ridiculous role of his successful career. My vote is three.

Title (Brazil): "Como Você Sabe" ("How Do You Know")
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Thoughtful, funny, and romantic dramedy
napierslogs17 December 2010
"How Do You Know" is a thoughtful, funny, and romantic dramedy. It covers young people in their early thirties having to make tough choices about their life and career, and does it with way more thought and accuracy than something like "Morning Glory"(2010).

The film begins with some interesting parallels. George (Paul Rudd) and Lisa (Reese Witherspoon) have had some unlucky breaks in their careers and their lives are going straight downhill. George is with an analytically-minded girlfriend but she thinks his troubles would be too much for their relationship, meanwhile Lisa is with Matty (Owen Wilson) but he doesn't have enough brain power to care what she's thinking let alone what that would mean. It ends up playing out like a romantic comedy rather than a drama, but there is still a lot of thought and simple honesty to the whole thing.

This is the role that I have been waiting for for Paul Rudd. He is still very funny but this is about his character and what he's going to do with the crap that life has handed him. Witherspoon was cute and likable. Sometimes their simple messages were too simple and things got a little too neat, but the actors were all quite funny and I thoroughly enjoyed "How Do You Know".
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Horrible, No story line, no comedy.
coffeeshopstyle26 December 2010
Seriously amazing cast.....seriously amazing flop! This is the worst movie I have seen all year and I was very, very disappointed. There was not real story line, characters were all over the place and comedy? There was none. Every humorous moment you saw on TV is ALL the comedy in the entire movie. This movie dragged on and on and we were both tempted to just leave because it was so boring. Paul Rudd is one of my most favorite actors and its a shame this movie will be in his record for life. Please save your time and money and rent this movie if you must see it. Otherwise don't see it at all. I have to reach a minimum of 10 lines...I don't know how this is possible. This movie was so dull and poorly written and directed that I am at a loss for words in complaining about it. We go to the movies every week almost and this movie ruined movie night. Please, please, please save yourself time and movie and turn around and go home or see another movie. It was really that bad.
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Works better than a sleeping tablet
shane_nicholls31 January 2011
This movie sucks big time, slow and drifts in and out of boring to comatose...just like the audience is drifting in and out of the films induced coma effect.

If you suffer from constipation this film may just be what you're looking for.

I'm putting Paul Rudd in the same category as Ashton Kutcher...movies to avoid at all cost.

File under:

Boring / Stupid Unfortunately the vote field here will note let me vote in the negative ... a big -100 (minus one hundred)

Hope I helped someone save a few of their hard earned bucks.
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How Do You Know Isn't Romantic Nor Comic
Desertman8414 September 2012
Warning: Spoilers
How Do You Know is a romantic comedy that stars Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson and Jack Nicholson.The movie centers on the story of a passionate athlete who finds herself romantically torn between a narcissistic baseball star and a straight-laced businessman.It was directed, written and produced by James L. Brooks.

Lisa (Witherspoon) has sports been the definition of her life. Then, in the blink of an eye, she's cut from the team due to age and decline of skills. With her identity in crisis as she attempts to regain her footing in life,she begins dating Matty (Wilson),a Major League Baseball pitcher and notorious womanizer. Meanwhile, terminally honest businessman George (Rudd) finds himself on the road to financial ruin or worse after being wrongly implicated in a financial crime. As he struggles to clear his name and reconcile his turbulent relationship with his father, Charles (Nicholson);a chance meeting with Lisa at the lowest point in both of their lives leaves him optimistic that things may work out after all. Meanwhile, Lisa and George both realize that the only thing that's certain about the future is that we never know what fate has in store for us.

The film fails due to the fact that it is in the romantic comedy genre and it is neither romantic nor comic.It hardly generates any laughs despite the talent involved like Witherspoon and Nicholson.What's worse,there is no resolution involved in the relationship between George and Lisa except the fact that only the future knows what's in store for them.Everything was just left hanging in the air just like how they got attracted to each other except for experiencing bad things in life.It could have worked better if the screenplay addressed the connection between them instead of simply putting it as a plot requirement and nothing more.
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Mediocre romantic comedy...
Paul Magne Haakonsen12 March 2011
As for a romantic comedy, then "How Do You Know" was fairly slow and lacked some of that special ingredient to make it stand out from the many, many others in the same genre.

Sure the movie had an impressive list of cast, and there was some good chemistry between Reese Witherspoon (playing Lisa) and Paul Rudd (playing George). And they worked well together on the screen. Also Owen Wilson (playing Matty) was well cast for that particular role. Most impressively was seeing Jack Nicholson (playing Charles) in this movie, he truly is a diverse actor.

The story in "How Do You Know" is basically right out of the romantic comedy cookbook; two people meet and eventually get to find love, and of course need to get through the obstacles along the way. Pretty textbook material there, so don't expect any major new-thinking in the movie. But still, the story was enjoyable, though at times very slow moving.

There are other romantic comedies that have more meat on it, so to speak. But for fans of Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd or Owen Wilson, then this movie is a good addition. I didn't mention Jack Nicholson here, because he is better in other types of movies.

I was entertained throughout the movie, despite the long patches of endless dragging on. However, I can't say that I will be putting the movie on a second time. For me, it just doesn't have that much appeal.
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