Monday, November 16, 2009

I Love You, Beth Cooper (2009)

Directed by Chris Columbus. I'm not sure if Hayden Panettiere is the luckiest movie star in the world right now or the unluckiest. She seems like the luckiest because she certainly doesn't seem to have a bit of talent or charisma and yet here she is starring in movies. Yes, she's relatively good looking, but by relatively, I mean relative to the people you work with. You can't tell me you could throw a rock on the set of "Entourage" without popping the boob implant of at least one girl at least as talented and much better looking.

I was going to say that she could be the unluckiest because as soon as everyone else figures all of this out, she's done, but really, this doesn't seem to happen. Kate Hudson just makes movie after movie after movie and not only does Kate Hudson suck, but nobody goes to see her movies. Yet, she gets to be a movie star. O.K., that does it. I wasn't going to write a review of "The Proposal," but now I'm wound up.

Meanwhile, Paul Rust -- a.k.a. "Denis Cooverman" is also in this tedious flick and I don't sense any charisma oozing out of him either. The closest thing in this movie to amusing was third-billed Jack Carpenter, though not in a good way. His feet were nailed into this and ordered to act as much like Apatow-flunkie Jay Baruchel as possible -- so much so, I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of casual moviegoers mistook him for Baruchel.

But it's not fair to place all of the blame on the shoulders of these young actors, who were not led by some amateur, but 20-plus year directing veteran Chris Columbus. I'm not saying Columbus knows how to make a great movie. I'll hand it to him that he didn't screw up a couple of Harry Potter flicks, but he has enough marks on this permanent record ("Bicentennial Man," "Mrs. Doubtfire," "Stepmom") that he should always be eyed with the same suspicion as that kid your sure has peed in your pool.

But the weird part is that 15 minutes into this, I didn't know Columbus had directed this piece of moose poop, and I could have sworn it was made by a first-time director whose problem was simply that he or she had never seen a movie before. Everything wasn't just bad, it was just plain wrong. Shots lingered too long (or too short), bad takes were selected, the actors didn't seem to know what they were supposed to be doing. It's a mess. In a crazy way, I almost want to recommend it.

That's why I'm wondering if maybe this Hayden Panettiere is actually a dwarf goblin or something, and this movie is secretly a masterpiece of either CGI or mythical creature wrangling. In which case Chris Columbus is cursed in that he may never step forward to take the bow he so rightfully deserves.

Perhaps Columbus will have his bow next year, when "Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief" is released. I am not making up this title. That's the other explanation for this piece of dung, he's putting all his effort into "Percy Jackson." It's got a huge cast and lots of CGI, so it should be awesome.

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