Carole Mallory's blog consists of movie and book reviews and commentary on Hollywood. Mallory is an actress who portrayed a Stepford Wife in the original film and appeared in other movies such as Looking for Mr. Goodbar. A former supermodel, her writings are published in The Huffington Post and Hollywood's The Wrap. Her book reviews are published in the Philadelphia Inquirer. Norman Mailer was her mentor. Upon his death she sold her collection of writings with his edits to Harvard University.
And they all lived together happily forever. Ba humbug. Mediocrity in big budget super duper fan fare. An unseen enemy takes over bodies, erases memories and threatens mankind. Oh, please.. Hand me the catsup. William Hurt is wasted in a thankless role and Frances Fisher plays another disgruntled character. When are we going to see you smile, Frances?. And Hunger Games novelist,, Stephanie Meyer, what were you thinking? And Nick Wechsler you made a bundle producing Magic Mike ,so why were you wasting your money on this? Sure it has a beautiful cast. Great looking men. Acting uneven. Sets stifling. Andrew Niccol wrote the screenplay and directed this homage to the supernatural where love conquers all. Niccol kept control of the movie all right, but to no avail. Get me outta here! I kept thinking as more dead blue eyes appeared on the silver screen, YES, they were from another planet. Many other planets, but did I care? Not really. That's what was missing .. Caring. The audience snickered in love scenes. Rightfully so. Max Irons was drop dead gorgeous and his acting was equally deadpan. Pity. He got your juices going but to where? The women were only three noteworthy. Saoirse Ronan stars as a wanderer whose body is taken by the seekers. You figure it out. Not much to figure. Fancy steely cars matching steely eyes and steely architecture. Diane Kruger is the head seeker out to kill off all humans, but Melanie/Wanda (Saoirse Ronan) is our heroine out to save the planet. Therein your plot lies. Yawns abound. At first I thought this was where Stepford Wives left off until I saw Diane Kruger as the femme fatale out to do in Melanie/Wanda. Whatever, The highlight of the film was William Hurt, but I couldn't help thinking how much did they have to pay him to do this film? There are so many human interest stories to make into films and Hollywood chooses this. This ain't no Hunger Games.. .
Charming. A refreshing topic and setting for a romance between opposites. Tina Fey plays by-the-book Princeton admissions officer Portia Nathan. Paul Rudd oversees an alternative high school in a free-wheeling, loosey goosey style which only Paul Rudd as John Pressman can portray. Rudd has never been better. His frequent tendency to shtick is absent and a genuine soft side gives his performance a refreshing air of sincerity. He has stopped trying to be funny and just allows the dialogue to flow and the situation to rule. Fey also is in top shape. Her tendency to force a situation also is put on the back burner. She drives most of the scenes with her dynamic energy, but she allows Rudd to work off of her and they form a terrific duo of laid back comedy. Director Paul Weitz shows his skill in getting these wonderful performances out of Fey and Rudd both who have a tendency to turn comedy into ham,
Karen Croner's screenplay has LOL moments such as when a debonair playboy type meets Portia's mother, Lily Tomlin. 'You look as lovely as you did thirty years ago,' he says. ''I've had a mastectomy,' she replies with a dead pan Tomlin delivery. Tomlin rarely has been better. Again, Weitz put the brakes on Tomlin's tendency to overact and allows the raw sincerity of the moments shine through.
The plot is not complicated and not packed with pizzazz but this film is about characters and their relationships. I found this refreshing with all the slambamthankumam action flicks covered in ratatat-tin jamming our cinemas. John Pressman wants to get his progressive student who has D's but is a self-educated scholar into Princeton and cajoles Portia into bending rules in his favor. A secondary plot line is that Portia has given up a baby for adoption and has been haunted as to his whereabouts. John convinces Portia that his progressive student is her son. Wallace Shawn plays the dean of Princeton's admissions again in an understated non clichéd manner, While director Weitz was watching for over-acting, he missed John's mother, who pushes the envelope in playing a socialite in a stereotypical obnoxious manner. Well, one bad performance can be lived through thanks to Fey,Rudd and Tomlin, who make a mediocre script work and time fly and your ticket to admission worth the price of admission.