A Terrible Hit From Emma Stone’s Past Is Coming to Netflix This Week

By Erika Hanson | 7 seconds ago

emma stone

In just a little over a decade, Emma Stone has proven her worth in Hollywood. From roles like Gwen Stacy in The Amazing Spider-Man film series to her acclaimed performance in  La La Land that earned the young starlet an Academy Award, Stone has made quite the name for herself in a short time. But while her fruitful career is surely chocked full of memorable characters and hits, some of her films are easily forgettable. With that being said, one of Emma Stones’ debut roles is coming to Netflix to ring in the New Year. And while it’s definitely no Dickens, the terrible yet surprisingly successful hit, Ghost of Girlfriends Past, will surely garner the streaming service plenty of views.

Released in 2009 at the peak of Matthew McConaughey’s rom-com phase that saw the actor dish out blockbuster hits with How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days and The Wedding Planner, Ghost of Girlfriends Past set out to dish out yet another Hollywood blockbuster centered around the Hollywood heartthrob. This time around, McConaughey’s character plays Conner Mead, a famous photographer, and notorious womanizer. When Conner has to attend his brother’s wedding, he’s reacquainted with Jennifer Garner’s Jenny Perotti, the only girl to ever truly win over the playboy’s heart.

Taking a play out of Charles Dickens’ famous 1843 novella, A Christmas Carol, Connor is met the night before the wedding by the ghost of his playboy Uncle Wayne. His uncle is played by Hollywood vet Michael Douglas. Giving warming to his philanderous tendencies, Connor is visited by three ghosts who lead him through his romantic past present and future–starting with a young Emma Stone as Allison Vandermeersh, one of his first exes and the ghost of girlfriends past. 

emma stone netflix ghosts of girlfriends past

Appearing frozen in time as the first girl to have sex with young Connor, Emma Stone’s take on Allison Vandermeersh was obnoxiously loud, but apparently, that’s what the directors were going for. In what was likely meant to be reminiscent of all things ’80s, including acid-washed jackets and larger-than-life teased hair, her performance in the film was easily forgettable. And let’s be honest, forgetting her part in this disaster of a film might be for the best, though many people will be revisiting the performance as it resurfaces on Netflix for streaming.

As harshly remembered as the film may be today, a look back at its box office debut may come as a shock. On the film’s opening weekend, it debuted at the number two spot with a gross of $15.4 million. Ghost of Girlfriends Past went on to make $55.3 million in the United States and Canada, totaling an impressive $102.4 million worldwide. These numbers may come off as shocking, but as criticized as the film may be, it came at the height of McConaughey’s lusted-over era and had the means to produce a hilarious rom-com with star-studded girl power from the likes of strong Hollywood actresses like Jennifer Garner and Emma Stone. 

Even an impressive cast wasn’t enough to save the bland and confusing tale from disaster. And in what many call a huge blow to Charles Dickens’ legacy, the film received disastrous reviews across the board. The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes holds Ghost of Girlfriends Past at a dismal 28% rating. Based on 144 reviews with an average rating of 4.3 out of 10, the site’s consensus reads “1”. Even renowned film critic Roger Ebert dubbed the film a disaster, but he also took the time to make note of the film’s potential. Blaming much of the screenplay, Ebert noted that the film had some undeniably funny moments that were just lost in the jumble of the plot and the unneeded focus on Matthew McConaughey–the Texas native who couldn’t even bother disguising his Texas drawl while playing a New Yorker. 

As disastrous as the role in Ghost of Girlfriends Past may have been for everyone involved, the negativity did nothing to slow the career of Emma Stone. The same year that brought the terrible hit also gave the world the instant hit Zombieland, where Stone portrayed Wichita, a badass con-artist and survivor of a zombie apocalypse. The dark comedy was considered a huge breakthrough for Stone’s career, and it led to pivotal roles including La La Land which landed the actress the title of the Academy’s best actress. 

Ghost of Girlfriends Past joins a long list of films that will come available to stream on Netflix starting January 1st. The decade-old film is a far cry from one of Emma Stone’s recent endeavors that saw her evolve into the notorious fashion icon, Estella in Disney’s Cruella. And while Emma Stone is surely prepping for another stint with the character in the planned release for Disney’s upcoming Cruella 2, a look back at where the Academy Award-winning actress got her start is always worth a little time on streaming.