Writer/director Edward Zwick has, in the more recent years of his career, captured the market on epic, slightly naval-gazing/worthy dramas like The Last Samurai, Blood Diamond and Defiance. But back in the day, he was a writer/producer on such shows as Thirtysomething and Once & Again, and based on the trailer, his latest cinematic outing, Love & Other Drugs, seems to hew closer to the playful spirit of his TV work than those films.
Working from Jamie Reidy’s comic memoir Hard Sell: The Evolution of a Viagra Salesman, Zwick presents a tale of Jamie (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Maggie (Anne Hathaway), who couldn’t be more different yet make a connection.
Jamie’s a smug, cocky drugs rep working around the time that Viagra was unleashed upon the world. He’s charming and winning with the ladies. But then he meets Maggie, a free sprit who sees right through his smarm. Soon, they’re sleeping together, but it quickly turns to love, something that takes them both by surprise.
While Gyllenhaal seems to be letting the smug do most of the work here (at least early on), Hathaway is bright, breezy and hints at Maggie’s depths lurking just beneath the surface. It’s already being quietly talked about as one of the better performances of the year, but we’ll have to wait to see the whole film before we know for sure.
The trailer’s over at Apple. The movie will be with us on December 29.