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A man in trouble What it's like to have an ex with superpowers

Go ahead. Be coy and prim and proper if you want, but you'll have to excuse the rest of us if we need to step over here for a moment and talk about sex.

To be specific, that great subject of adolescent conjecture, sex with a superhero. It crosses most minds that have ever thought at all about superpowers, that sex with those who possess them would, no doubt, be, uhhhh, memorable, at the very least. In "Superman" movies, though, everyone's so decorous that Blue Boy wouldn't dream of sharing an evening with his inamorata Lois unless he briefly lost every power that made him Super.

Not G-Girl in Ivan Reitman's delightful "My Super Ex-Girlfriend." Leave it to the man who gave us "Ghostbusters," "Meatballs" and "Stripes" to tell us she's a wall-smasher and a woman who has her own definition of the Mile High Club. In truth, I'm sure Reitman thought of all manner of more pungent variations (I certainly did), but this is a PG-13 film, after all.

So help me, as soon as I saw that, I knew that "My Super Ex-Girlfriend" was in very good hands.

And then there's this golden comedy question: What if your deeply neurotic, grasping girlfriend -- "needy, jealous and calculating," the "trifecta" as the hero's best friend puts it -- happens to have superpowers? How do you break up with her?

A guy could find his fish boiled by her X-ray vision and his car launched into earthly orbit with "you" written on one door and "suck" written on the other.

I'm not going to tell you exactly how a Great White Shark enters the proceedings. Let me just say that when it does, "My Super Ex-Girlfriend" practically had me on the floor. In a perfect world, Hollywood would give tickets to this to everyone who suffered through Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston squabbling charmlessly through "The Break-Up." When this movie is funny, it's laugh-out-loud funny. And in case that sounds exhausting, there are quite a few runaway titters, too.

This being a latter-day Ivan Reitman movie (i.e. post-"Kindergarten Cop"), it's also in a constant struggle against its own sitcommy blandness. Reitman is under the impression that the cliched gummy stuff gives his movies emotional realism. I'm willing to indulge him as long as he keeps the shark jokes coming.

The fellow with the exotic romantic problems is played by Luke Wilson, the darker and more glib of the comedy-ruling Wilson brothers. The neurotic G-Girl is played deliciously -- and perfectly -- by Uma Thurman, who is clearly a heck of a lot more fun than we might have previously thought (on Wednesday's Letterman, she agreed to try to catch a hard-boiled egg in her mouth when it was tossed from a distance).

Rainn Wilson of "The Office" is the best friend, Anna Faris is the love object most likely and Wanda Sykes -- a bit wasted, actually -- is around to spritz some lemon juice over some C-grade wisecracks. Also more than a bit wasted is the flamboyant Brit cross-dressing comic Eddie Izzard.

"My Super Ex-Girlfriend" never really takes off into comedic deep space, but it's not exactly earthbound, either. A lot of this is funny stuff -- honest.

Summer movie comedy lovers might have a similar reaction: It's about bloody time.

MY SUPER EX-GIRLFRIEND

STARRING: Uma Thurman, Luke Wilson, Anna Faris, Eddie Izzard and Wanda Sykes

DIRECTOR: Ivan Reitman

RUNNING TIME: 85 minutes

RATING: PG-13 for sex, language and a nude backside.

THE LOWDOWN: Luke Wilson discovers the answer to the question: What if you break up with a neurotic, angry, vindictive woman who also has superpowers?

e-mail: jsimon@buffnews.com

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