For a Good Time, Call... (18)


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The Independent Culture

The makers of this New York comedy obviously imagined it as a tribute to female friendship, whereas what has ended up on screen is a crass, sentimental and fantastically boring movie about phone-sex.

Lauren Anne Miller, who co-wrote it with Katie Anne Naylon, plays a young woman who gets dumped by her boyfriend and needs a new place. Her gay friend (Justin Long) hooks her up with Katie (Ari Graynor) and, despite loathing one another since college, they set up home together in the latter's Gramercy Park apartment.

When money gets tight the girls decide to set up a business, too, selling sex down the phone to heavy-breathing masturbators (Seth Rogen and Kevin Smith supply unlovely cameos).

The screenplay mines a seam of raunchy, explicit sex-talk that would like to ride the wave of post-Bridesmaids vulgarity, but it has neither the charm nor lightness of touch to carry it off.

I laughed once, when Long airily describes Katie's late grandmother as a "knitting maven" – which sounds nothing special now yet felt like comedy gold compared with the rest. And that title deserves all that's coming to it.