Second Act Movie Review – Complicated rather than complex


Jennifer Lopez probably fancies herself as a “Working Girl” and that explains her producing and acting in a film that has shades of the Oscar winner mashed up with done to death romcom elements

The Second Act poster

The Second Act

U/A: Comedy, Romance
Director: Peter Segal
Cast: Jennifer Lopez, Leah Remini, Vanessa Hudgens
Rating: Ratings

Jennifer Lopez probably fancies herself as a ‘Working Girl’ and that explains her producing and acting in a film that has shades of the Oscar winner mashed up with done to death romcom elements. The script credited to Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas and Justin Zackham transforms an uneducated, street-smart 40-year-old woman, Maya(Jennifer Lopez) into a winning corporate consultant – and to get there she jumps the truth about her background, gets a resume makeover and wins the confidence of the head honcho. The boss (Treat Williams) sets up two teams, one lead by Maya and the safer one led by his daughter, Zoe (Vanessa Hudgens). But no prizes for guessing who won that battle. The usual alienation from old friends is followed by a redemptive effort at truth-telling.

Peter Segal’s Second Act tries to do too much. The impetus for Maya’s cheat makeover comes from professional rejection – We meet Maya the day she loses out on a big promotion at Value Shop, because of her lack of an MBA and a dopey idiot gets it because he does. We see Maya reconciling with the daughter she gave up for adoption and then losing her again for a bit before they reconcile again. The same happens with her friends and colleagues from her former workplace. They are the ones who support and encourage her (to hilarious results sometimes). Corporate skulduggery notwithstanding there’s also the romantic interest whom she failed to confide in. It’s all too complicated rather than complex.

Check out the trailer here:

The few times the film manages to perk you up involves an impromptu dance with Maya leading her office nemesis (Freddie Stroma) onto the dance floor in an attempt to sideswipe his attempt to expose her. And another time you feel the passion is when she and her girlfriends (Remini, Lacreta, Dierdre Friel) do a “Push it REAL good” dancing sing along. The writing is not without its frivolous light-hearted banter but much of it is lost in the attempt to paint Maya in a gratifying light. This romcom is fairly bearable but not exactly likeable.

Also Read: Jennifer Lopez explains why she did Second Act

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