||Romantic comedies are fantasies. They invite us to fall in love with the main characters as they fall in love with each other. That's difficult to accomplish when viewers find themselves actively disliking those characters. How is it possible to succumb to the fantasy when its participants are sleazy, creepy, or bitchy? With My Best Friend's Girl, director Howard Deutch has the beginnings of an excellent anti-romantic comedy: unlikeable characters, betrayals, and a general desire to see everyone die in a nuclear holocaust. For a while, My Best Friend's Girl seems to be going in the direction of a full-on black comedy where the words "ever after" are spoken only in reference to the phrase "praying for the end of time" (with apologies to Meat Loaf). Alas, around the halfway point, the film takes a 180-degree turn and tries to follow the formula, reforming the selfish protagonist and proving that true love conquers all. The problem? We still hate the characters and the happy ending feels as much like a cheat as any I have seen all year...The director, Howard Deutch, has lost his way over the years. He began his career as the hand-picked helmsman for two of John Hughes' most beloved teen films, Pretty in Pink and Some Kind of Wonderful. After that, he moved on to making bad sequels to dubious "franchises." Now he has led us to this pit of a romantic comedy. Deutch has directed a lot of comedies, but few of them have been funny, and this is no exception. Whatever grasp he once displayed of fleshing out human characters is long gone...My Best Friend's Girl isn't just a misfire; it's a misfire compounded by a chain of miscalculations, and it's hard to figure out who this could appeal to (except, perhaps, Dane Cook's fan club).