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Movie Review by Alice Castle

Starring: Ashley Judd, Greg Kinnear, Hugh Jackman, Ellen Barkin

Director: James B Rogers

ANIMAL ATTRACTION is another offering for the thirty-something singletons – a sort of sassy media New York stance on the Bridget Jones theme. Based on Laura Zigman’s book “Animal Husbandry” jilted TV publicist Jane Goodale (the extremely likeable Ashley Judd – “Double Jeopardy”) forms a theory about human behaviour based on an article she reads in the New York Times about bovine behaviour. Bulls don’t want to mate with the same cow twice. Even when an “old cow” is covered with “new cow” pong the bull can tell she is still an “old cow” and won’t mate with her again. And so it goes!

Jane has been dumped by TV producer and co-worker Ray Brown (Greg Kinnear -AS GOOD AS IT GETS, NURSE BETTY) and he’s backed out of moving in with her at the last minute. Jane finds she can relate her whole unsatisfactory love-life to her “old-cow” theory, and cynical though it is, is asked by her supportive female chum to ghost a letters page in a successful mens’ magazine. They decide that if she’s going to be taken seriously she better look serious – so she adopts the persona of a middle-aged, female psychiatrist – equipped with raised eyebrow and grey bun hairstyle. Within weeks she’s the talk of the talk-show circuit and Jane’s boss (Ellen Barkin) always in search of “the ungettable get” is desperate to have her on the show.

In the meantime Jane moves in with office romeo/sleezebag the handsome Eddie (Hugh Jackman X-MEN) because having been let down by the TV producer she has lost her apartment. Master of the one night stand Eddie promises he won’t lay a finger on her – but don’t tell me you can’t see it coming!

ANIMAL ATTRACTION is a light-hearted romantic comedy – the slightly heavier and thoughtful moments don’t really work. Ellen Barkin is great as a media hag and Ashley Judd is extremely likeable.

3 out of 6 stars