October 8, 2010 at 1:00 am

Review: 'Life As We Know It' just a rehash of life as we know it

Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel take charge of their dead friends’ baby Sophie in “Life As We Know It.” (Courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures)

"Life As We Know It" is awfully familiar. It's every baby movie you know crossed with every mismatched couple movie you know. Without even seeing it, you've seen it, dozens of times before.

Katharine Heigl is Holly, a caterer — of course, she's a caterer! — whose uptight, control freak tendencies seem leftover from just about every Heigl film role. Her opposite is the carefree Eric (Josh Duhamel), who is so pleased with his perpetual bachelorhood he prefers being called by his last name, Messer, despite its obvious implications.

These two are thrown together when their best friends are killed in a car crash. In their will, they named Holly and Messer as caretakers of their infant daughter — they're little Sophie's godparents — so it's up to our two leads to put their differences aside and honor their friends' wishes.

Do you think maybe they'll fall in love, too? Have you ever seen a movie before?

"Life As We Know It" never strays from the path set before it. There are the diaper scenes and spit-up scenes required in every baby flick, along with the familiar trappings of every romantic comedy. Yes, there's even a climactic scene at the airport.

Heigl and Duhamel do fine with what they're given. Both are appealing, and Duhamel shows a rugged charm he's not allowed to when he's chasing Transformers around on screen.

But "Life As We Know It" isn't so much about life as it is repurposing the movies that came before it. It aims for comfort food, but ends up with leftovers.

agraham@detnews.com (313) 222-2284