L!fe Happens as reviewed in The Phantom Tollbooth

Here's one for the ladies and all the grown-ups.

Is the new comedy L!FE HAPPENS a strong advocate for birth control or even abstinence? Not intentionally but you can't help but ponder those subjects when watching. At the root this is a female buddy film that just so happens to have a kid involved. It is just as much about the dynamic of friendship as anything else.

Kat Coiro wrote the screenplay loosely about her own experiences. The story is about two best friends, Kim (Krysten Ritter) and Deena (Kate Bosworth) who have their relationship tested after Kim becomes pregnant and ends up a single mom. Kim can no longer go out partying and forget about picking up hot guys at a stop light with a baby in the back. As roommates the strain is even more apparent when it comes to Kim taking advantage of the free babysitting. The comedy element comes in the film when Kim meets a hunky guy and tells him the baby is actually Deena's; as to not scare him off.

The film certainly shows the strain of single parenting. The balancing act that Kim goes through should make anyone second guess that impromptu roll in the hay. The frustrations that Ritter's character goes through are real and never feel forced or manipulative. You get the sense that Coiro wrote solidly from the heart. The dialogue between Kim and Deena gets heated at times and it is only the foundation of their bond that gets them through. This, I am sure, rings true in many a GNO scenario.

L!FE HAPPENS is a film for women and geared that direction. At the same time the male characters add humor that men can relate to; especially those still in the dating world. More a girl's night out film, it may work in a pinch as a date movie. Though if possible, ladies, please leave your guy at home for this one. This may serve better all-around as a renter more than a big screen outing. The highlights were there but served up between large gaps of random dialogue and disjointed humor. Coiro has some great nuggets but just not sure enough to fill 100 minutes.

Rated R for sexual content including references, the film is unquestionably an adult comedy. Women have started being as crass and perverted in their speech as guys these days. So keep that in mind when selecting this one. I give it 2.5 out of 5 diaper bags. A worthy premise and strong potential just didn't play out as well as it could have. Maybe if Kat had focused more on the writing and let someone else direct it would have been a better success.

Review copyright 2012 Mungleshow Productions. Used by Permission.