Movie Trailer: James L. Brooks' How Do You Know

As I'm sure many readers here will agree, romantic comedies are generally responsible for a lot of the worst films that Hollywood has to offer. Reason being, they rarely do little more than parade about a bunch of shallow pretty people leading too-perfect lives while amusingly simplistic conflicts repeatedly tear them apart and bring them back together. The trailer for James L. Brooks' follow-up to Spanglish and As Good as It Gets, How Do You Know, seems to follow this formula pretty closely, and yet the trailer offers just enough to indicate it may actually be worth watching. Could this be the romantic comedy to prove that the throwaway fluff entries in the genre don't have to be torturous?

The plot centers around "the love triangle between professional softball player Lisa Jorgenson, a corporate executive, and a major-league pitcher," and stars Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson, and Jack Nicholson.

Check out the trailer after the break.

Yahoo! Movies has the trailer. Head over there to watch it in HD, or watch it embedded below.

Look past the default romantic comedy music selections and bland trailer editing, and there's evidence of a solid if familiar little movie here. Nothing as interesting as As Good as It Gets, but hopefully on par with some of Brooks' other work, like Spanglish and Broadcast News. It's the minute intricacies that sell it, like what I'm assuming was an improvised moment with Rudd swatting Witherspoon's leg. These are the same sort of honest, offbeat comedic touches that Brooks has brought to all of his films, and they really help to give it a more distinctive flavor than what we see in the typical studio trash from this subgenre. It also helps that the film has an extremely likable cast, even if none of the actors are venturing too far out of their comfort zones.

This isn't a film I'll be seeing with my friends, but I wouldn't mind sitting through it with my mom. That's something, right?

How Do You Know opens on December 17, 2010.