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‘Think Like a Man’ takes on self help books in a fun (but generic) date night movie

If there was one thing I learned from “Think Like a Man” it was that a Steve Harvey book can and will change my life.

Joining the newer genre of rom-coms based on self-help books, “Think Like a Man” delivers laughs, love scenes set to sexy R&B and cheesy pickup lines. What it doesn’t provide is anything new. The story arc is predictable following all the rules of its genre. Entirely based off a real book written by Steve Harvey, “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man,” the film and self-help book was meant to show women the light when it comes to dealing with the confusing animals that are men.

Kevin Hart’s character, Cedric, who steals every scene including the ones he’s not in, narrates the movie and introduces us to the main types of men: the player, the mama’s boy, the dreamer, the non-committer, the happily married man and the happily divorced man.

All of these stereotypes happen to make up Hart’s character’s friend group, a diverse basketball-playing bunch of decently attractive men. The banter between the group is one of the highlights of the movie and the dynamic between the characters seems natural. You could stumble upon this bunch at any happy hour sipping their Heinekins and attempting to pick up ladies at the bar.

While we get to know Cedric well through his constant barrage of complaints about his soon to be ex-wife, everyone else in the movie is disappointingly flat. They all have great hair and play the love scenes well, but I never felt like I really knew anything about the characters or what made them tick. For a film that was supposed to be all about getting into the eternal mystery of the man’s mind, no one really seemed to have anything complex going on up there.

While there were times that I could actually see my own boyfriend acting the same way the constant dreamer character did at times, it was still so one dimensional that I couldn’t fully connect with any one story line.

For all that it did wrong, “Think Like a Man” did a lot right, too. While the characters were hard to connect with, they were infinitely more likeable than anyone in the similar “He’s Just Not That Into You,” and much less whiney. The jokes were well-timed and it was a fun movie to watch.

It makes a perfect date night movie with its traditional, if slightly stale, plotline and happy ending. Hart’s obsession with strip clubs and being a perpetual bachelor is hilarious when coupled with his raunchy one-liners and opinions on race, women and sex. “Think Like a Man” was worth seeing, but don’t go in expecting anything revolutionary. It may have made the rom-com category a little funnier and sexier, but in the end it is nothing groundbreaking.

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