If I could write this movie review entirely in emoticons, I would. There'd be a sad face, followed by a screaming face, followed by a surprised face—the one I like to refer to as the "blowjob face."
Unfortunately for me, I don't get paid to write in frownies. The difficulty in writing actual words about The Ugly Truth is in deciding how seriously to take the movie. It's deeply misogynist, deeply unfunny, and deeply confused about its target audience. It's also a romantic comedy starring Katherine fucking Heigl.
It'd certainly be possible to write a panty-wadded screed on how sexist and offensive The Ugly Truth is, but anyone who's seen the previews knows exactly what they're in for. Heigl plays Abby, the producer of a tanking news show. Gerard Butler is Mike, the Howard Stern-esque shock jock brought in to improve ratings; his show purports to tell the "ugly truth" about relationships—"bitches ain't shit but hoes and tricks" sums it up pretty eloquently. Abby is uptight and controlling (as is absolutely appropriate for a producer of a news show... sigh), but desperate to shed her spinster status. And so, in yet another rehashing of the age-old opposite attracts formula, she solicits Mike's help in attracting a man. Which brings us to our premise: Gerard Butler spends most of the movie teaching Katherine Heigl how to be the kind of woman that men want.
Go ahead, reread that last sentence. It makes no sense whatsoever. If Katherine Heigl needs a makeover, where does that leave the rest of us? But in the world according to The Ugly Truth, what Heigl needs are hair extensions, a new bra, and a willingness to fake an orgasm. Also, there is a Jell-O wrestling scene.
My best friend summed it up perfectly: "I like romantic comedies. I don't like movies that make me feel bad about being a girl." But that's exactly what The Ugly Truth does—lobs off one easy, mean-spirited joke after the next, all at the expense of its target audience.