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Baby on Board 

Surrogate parents Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel breeze through their new gig

There aren’t too many things less inspiring than a movie trailer where the biggest laugh comes from a shot of baby poop smeared on a woman’s cheek. But trailers can be misleading. Life As We Know It -- starring Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel as a mismatched couple entrusted to care for their deceased friends’ infant daughter -- is a breezy, likable romantic comedy. The movie opens with a flashback of a disastrous blind date between statuesque Holly (Heigl) and Eric (Duhamel), who goes by his surname “Messer,” arranged by friends who die not long after in a car accident. The deceased couple leave cute redheaded baby Sophie to Holly and Messer, who loathe each other. Holly (a pastry-shop owner, the job given, for some reason, to every romantic-comedy heroine these days) and Messer (a womanizer who directs Atlanta Hawks TV broadcasts) move into their dead friends’ house and forge an uneasy parenting alliance. Even a blind man can see where this is going. But there are pleasures along the way: easy chemistry between the leads, an amusing supporting cast (especially the couple’s neighbors, who all lust after Messer), and some savory lines, the best of which comes from Messer’s co-worker, who defines marriage as “Imagine a prison. And then don’t change anything.”

More by Pamela Zoslov

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