"No Strings Attached" is a 2011 romantic comedy that focuses on a relationship of sex without romance. The movie asks whether two people can have sex without falling in love and answers with "no," giving filmgoers a conventional Hollywood ending. The film also relies on gender role reversal to add interest to the story, since the male character develops an emotional attachment to the female character, who only wants sex.
Adam, played by Ashton Kutcher, and Emma, played by Natalie Portman, originally met at summer camp. Years later, Adam's girlfriend Vanessa breaks up with him and moves in with Adam's father. Adam responds to this by getting drunk and passing out. He wakes up in an apartment with Emma and three roommates, who tell him that they all saw him naked.They have sex and try to avoid falling in love. Emma decides she doesn't have time for a romantic relationship and decides to have regular intercourse with Adam.
Adam is a romantic, but the pain that Vanessa put him through makes him want to shy away from romance. Emma finds emotional love illogical. They agree to no-strings-attached sex and lay a series of ground rules, including no love and no dating. However, they eventually go on dates, including a museum trip and miniature golf. Adam and Emma text and call each other when they want sex. When they become more emotionally attached to each other, Emma suggests they sleep with other people. Adam develops feelings for Emma and wants to get serious. He worries that Emma will hook up with a doctor named Sam.
Adam's father takes Adam out to dinner with Vanessa and Emma. Adam's father announces that he and Vanessa will have a baby together and Vanessa criticizes Adam's father over that. Adam and Vanessa go out on a date and Adam proclaims his love. Vanessa gets angry and tells him that he should date someone who isn't going to hurt him.
Emma decides that she wants to be with Adam after she becomes upset over not being around him. She sees Adam with Lucy, a girl Adam plans to have sex with, and becomes upset. Adam is about to sleep with Lucy, but his father overdoses on Purple Drank. Adam rushes to the hospital and finds out that Vanessa doesn't want to be with Adam's father, since she's afraid of old people. Adam and Emma make up and go to Emma's sister's wedding. Emma asks Adam what he thinks will happen next and he holds Emma's hand. Lucy hooks up with Adam's dad. The last scene of the movie has Adam and Emma snuggling while asleep.
- Sun Times; No Strings Attached; Roger Ebert; January 2011
- Hollywood Reporter; Film Review: 'No Strings Attached' Is Cutesy, Nowhere Near Hot Enough; Todd McCarthy; January 2011
- Collider.com; No Strings Attached Review; Matt Goldberg; January 2011
- Time; No Strings Attached Review: The Thawing of Natalie Portman; Richard Corliss; January 2011
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