Just Like Heaven Mark Waters

Those waiting with bated breath for a comedic version of Ghost or City of Angels, fear not — Just Like Heaven (yup, named after the Cure song) has answered your prayers. Starring two of today's most lovable actors, Reese Witherspoon and Mark Ruffalo, this is a film that hits all the right spots for rom-com fanatics. Tragedy, laughs, hi-jinx, sexual tension and a predictable "will they or won't they end up together?" ending are all checked off the list. Witherspoon plays Elizabeth, a workaholic who has never realised her ambitions until after she's in an accident that puts her in a coma and releases her spirit. Enter Ruffalo as David, the slacker dude who rents her apartment, only to find Elizabeth's spirit still shacking up in the place. From there, chemistry slowly builds and David finds himself falling for the apparition while fighting to save her as the hospital tries to take her off life support. Yes, it's a real quandary, and although there are some cute, enjoyable moments that keep things steady, the film falls apart with a disgraceful ending that begs the question: "Why, dear god, why?" Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite and a big contributor to the finale's catastrophe) makes his first appearance since he became a somebody and nearly ruins the film with his one-dimensional character and inability to shake off the stink of that horrible dancing dufus. Thankfully, the deleted scenes offer an alternate ending that not only pokes fun at the original's sappy optimism but also provides the perfect ending for the cynic in all of us. Hell, give us the ability to re-cut the film and watch it this way and it becomes a charming breath of fresh romantic realism. The gag reel surprisingly holds up well, but in the "introduction to the cast" and the "making of" featurettes, the film's sparkling exuberance in making a comedy that, let's face it, won't be remembered ten years down the road feels on par with glorifying a baby's first go at the potty. (DreamWorks)