The Ex Review
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Tom Reilly (Zach Braff) has never been very good at holding down a job. But now that his wife, Sofia (Amanda Peet), is about to quit her job as a lawyer and become a full-time mom, it’s up to Tom to be their family’s only breadwinner. But on the day their son, Oliver, is born, things go wrong with Tom’s job as a chef—and he once again finds himself unemployed. This time, though, he’s got a wife and son to provide for, so he figures it’s time to do something drastic. He decides to leave New York City and move to Ohio, where his father-in-law (Charles Grodin) can get him a great job in advertising.

As it turns out, though, the job isn’t as great as Tom thought it would be. For starters, the office is full of crazy people with ridiculous ideas. Worst of all, Tom has to work with Chip Sanders (Jason Bateman), an old high school friend of Sofia’s who seems intent on winning her back—and ruining Tom’s life in the process.

  
 
Meanwhile, Sofia stays at home with very little to do—other than taking Oliver to a moms-and-babies class led by some hippie girl from her high school and hanging out with the little boy next door. She thought the whole stay-at-home-mom thing would be great—but she’s starting to think that she’s not cut out for the job.

If you’re a fan of Scrubs, you’ll be relieved to know that The Ex is just what you’d expect from Zach Braff. Lately, Braff has been trying to break away from type-casting by taking on more dramatic film roles—but not this time. Though he’s actually done relatively well with drama, it’s just nice to see him back in his comfort zone, playing the goofy, lovable screw-up that he plays so well. And throwing Jason Bateman into the mix as the heartless slime ball adds to the fun.

The Ex starts strong, with brief cameos by Paul Rudd and Romany Malco. The comedy is solid, and the story is entertaining. When the action moves to Ohio (which, incidentally, looks nothing like the Ohio that I live in), it switches gears a bit, but the wacky office and the feud between Tom and the office superstar, Chip, still manage to keep things interesting. After a while, though, the humor starts to get a little stale. It feels a bit overdone, and the battle between Chip and Tom gets a bit old. Things do pick up again, however—and by the time the credits roll, all (or at least most) is forgotten.

As far as comedies go, The Ex is a little better than average. It’s nothing brilliant or life-changing, but it’s good for a few laughs—especially for Scrubs fans.

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