What to Expect When You're Expecting (12A)

Kirk Jones, 109mins. Starring: Cameron Diaz, Elizabeth Banks

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The Independent Culture

"A miracle is happening inside me," coos one of the pregnant women who squat on this ensemble comedy about the joys and sorrows of parenting. The miracle happening inside me was that I managed to sit through the whole film without throwing up. But it was a close thing.

Jennifer Lopez as a portrait photographer and Cameron Diaz as a TV fitness guru are a particular trial, both of them controlling yummy-mummies-to-be who treat their partners like errant children (early practice) and generally poison the air with their spoilt self-entitlement.

Less grating is Elizabeth Banks as a baby evangelist and author whose own pregnancy occasions a complete body meltdown, while husband Ben Falcone is actually quite funny as a man squirming in the shadow of his genial bullying alpha-dad (Dennis Quaid).

The script (by Shauna Cross and Heather Hach) tries to appeal across the gender divide by featuring a "dudes" support group led by Chris Rock – basically, a bunch of pram-pushers who pretend not to hate the responsibility of fetching and carrying. A token effort, at least, but it will be a very lonely man who pays to see this.