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The Last Kiss

There's a good chance that many of Zach Braff's male fans will sympathize with the almost-30-year-old character he plays in The Last Kiss, identifying both with Michael's rising panic over thinking he knows exactly how the rest of his life is going to play out and with his subsequent rash actions. But lots of women are going to hate him. Michael is no sweetly goofy J.D. ("Scrubs") or endearingly mixed-up Andrew Largeman (Garden State). Michael is a man who, arguably, has everything — a good job as an architect; a smart, beautiful girlfriend (Jenna, played by Jacinda Barrett); and a baby on the way — and throws it all away when he meets beguiling young co-ed Kim (Rachel Bilson) at a wedding. Mind you, Michael isn't the only one in the movie dealing with a life crisis. His commitment-ready friend Izzy (Michael Weston) has been dumped by the girl of his dreams and can't figure out what to do next, and their married pal Chris (Casey Affleck) is bitter and exhausted, weary of the constant fights he's had with his wife since their baby was born. Even Jenna's parents are at a crossroads, with Anna (Blythe Danner) accusing Stephen (Tom Wilkinson) of not loving her the way she wants and deserves to be loved. With all of these stellar examples surrounding him, it's no wonder that Michael is a bit skeptical about relationship longevity — and, frankly, the way the movie depicts women, you can't really blame him for panicking about settling down with just one for the rest of his life (Chris's wife is a shrew, Anna is a drama queen, a pal's one-night stand tricks him into meeting her parents, and even free-spirited Kim turns into a clingy mess when things get complicated). But the way Michael chooses to deal with his doubts proves that, even at almost 30, he still has a lot of growing up to do. Like the darker, more unsettling Closer, The Last Kiss (adapted from the Italian film L'Ultimo Bacio) gives its audience — particularly those in relationships of their own — plenty to think about, as well as a whole new perspective on Zach Braff. DreamWorks' DVD presents the film in a strong anamorphic transfer (2.35:1) with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio (English 2.0 and French 5.1 tracks are also available, as are English and Spanish subtitles). Extras include a pair of commentary tracks (one features just Braff and director Tony Goldwyn; for the other, more boisterous track, they're joined by Bilson, Barrett, Weston, and fellow co-star Eric Christian Olsen), four behind-the-scenes featurettes, the Braff-directed music video for Cary Brothers' song "Ride," five deleted/extended scenes, two alternate endings (both of which offer more closure than the final cut but are also a lot cornier), a gag reel, the trailer, and previews. Keep-case.
—Betsy Bozdech

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