2005 Certificate: 12


Matthew McConaughey plays a 35-year-old man-boy who has grown so comfortable living with his parents he decides to stay there. Sarah Jessica Parker is the professional nest-emptier hired by his long-suffering parents to help him on his way. This superior rom-com is given a leg up by a galaxy of fast-quipping supporting stars including Zooey Deschanel as Parker's sassily sarcastic flatmate.


  • Tom Dey


  • Matthew McConaughey

  • Sarah Jessica Parker

  • Zooey Deschanel


When smooth-talking Tripp (McConaughey) whispers "how about coming back to my place" to a smitten honey, he's being a little economical with the truth.

Because it's not really his place at all.

He may be a successful yacht-broker with a high-spending lifestyle, but - for all his bachelor-about-town spiel - he still lives with his mum and dad.

Realising it's about time he made his way, they employ the services of Paula (Parker), a businesswoman whose talent is tempting stay-at-homes like Tripp out of the family home and into the real world.

Basically, this takes the form of serial pouting and eye contact followed by lunch and - according to the rule book - the smitten victim is already on his way.

However, Tripp turns out differently. He feels Paula is getting too close... so engineers their split by taking her home to meet the parents. She responds with the best sex he's ever had.

OK, so it's a barking premise but rendered likeable by a witty script and supporting turns from the likes of Zooey Deschanel as Paula's moody flatmate.

The amusing Justin Bartha and Bradley Cooper are the fellow stay-at-homes who join Tripp for mountain biking, rock-climbing and reassurance sessions when they tell each other it's alright not to do their own laundry. Even where you're 35.

There's little to suggest the Oscar-winning actor that McConaughey would become but he plays to his comedic strengths as the slacker mummy's boy.

Jessica Parker seems a bit, erm, age-advanced for her role but she's a game old bird and her scenes with Deschanel prove many of the highpoints.

It may be a bit tenuous and contrived, but when it works it works surprisingly well.

Tim Evans