A poster can be misleading. Looking at the one for People Like Us it would be fair to assume that Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks are a couple with an ill kid or something. You would be wrong though, as none of that happens. However the real plot is as equally dull as that.
Chris Pine doesn't want to go home for his father's funeral. Persuaded to go by girlfriend Olivia Wilde, Pine learns that his record producer dad, with whom he's had a fractious relationship, has included him in his will: an extensive vinyl collection and $150,000, which he has to deliver to troubled teen Michael Hall D'Addario, son of struggling Elizabeth Banks. As it turns out, Dad was a cad and Banks is Pine's half-sister. Pine is reluctant to hand over the cash as he's in a financial hole but he keeps his identity secret as he hangs around his new family.
Movies based around a secret need two things: because we're in on the secret we need a few unexpected twists and turns or we're just waiting around for it all to come out. What’s more the secret has to be a big 'un to drive the movie. People Like Us fail to deliver on both counts as the writing team of Roberto Orci and Jody Lambert (Transformers, Star Trek) can't come up with a good enough reason for Pine not to come clean. While their ending, what feels like the movie's fifth ending, is a touching one, the team have a Cameron Crowe knack of hanging around long after you don't care anymore. It really goes on for far too long.
While Pine and Banks (who’s in AA yet works in a bar?) are in fine form and young Michael Hall D'Addario isn't too shabby either, this drama is lacking a spark. Maybe it's the absence of romance. With the headliners a brother and sister team, the subplot of Wilde and Pine is shoehorned in just to hide out in the background and have no impact on the real goings on.
At best, this would pass the time if it came on TV some easy Wednesday night. And People Like Us what? Vote Republican? Didn't inhale? Love Nicholas Sparks? What?