Just what the world needs: another boy-meets-girl/boy-falls-for-girl-but-she-goes-out-with-his-best-mate/boy-gets-girl-anyway type of film.
All this, combined with the over-used "talents" of Schwimmer (two vids, three films and two series of Friends in one year) and you'd think this romantic comedy would be consigned to the dumper. But, luckily, Kissing A Fool has much going for it.
Lee, so great in Chasing Amy, goes on to prove that he's even better in a leading role. Avital (wordless as James Spader's love interest in Stargate) is charming, bright and witty, while Schwimmer is in his element as an oozing slimeball playing the quips and gags to good effect. The three manage to rise above the obvious plot and their cause is helped by a clutch of great supporting characters, including Hunt's know-all publisher and Sam's curvy flatmate Dara (Kari Wuhrer). Lee also manages to fulfil every spurned bloke's dream by giving his gorgeous ex a taste of her own medicine in a highly satisfying on-screen moment.
The Chicago locations are nicely used, but this is an everyman film: the characters could be anybody and the situation is familiar. There's a likable, independent feel at work here, combining Lee in his best role yet with several snatches of great dialogue. Kissing A Fool's only major drawback is that it's too video-friendly: it would benefit from a smaller scale viewing, where the character's clichéd situations would feel more intimate and the best lines could be re-played with relish.
An entertaining, up-beat romantic comedy with a male lead you can really root for. The plot is hardly original, but some good performances and a solid script provide this with all of the hallmarks of a small-scale cult classic.