Helping You Get the Most Out of Your Misery






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Monday, August 27, 2007


Stop Her Before She Directs Again!

I throw a lot of insults Michael Bay's way. That's because your average six-year-old could do a better job directing a movie than the dipshit who shoved Bad Boys II and Pearl Harbor down our throats. Seriously, why is he still allowed to make movies?

After last night, though, I would really have to put Nancy Meyers right next to Mr. Bay on my list of Directors Whose Work Makes Me Want to Slit My Wrists. It's a list I've been keeping since, as a five-year-old, I insisted my family walk out of of One of Our Dinosaurs is Missing because I found the story so implausible. I really felt Robert Stevenson's work had fallen off since Son of Flubber.

Ms. Meyers, you may be aware, was the woman who gave us What Women Want, the film which featured the hilarity of Mel Gibson trying on panty hose. She was also responsible for Something's Gotta Give, which asked us to believe that, A) Amanda Peet would fuck Jack Nicholson; B) Diane Keaton would dump Keanu Reeves for Jack Nicholson and C) audiences would want to think about Jack Nicholson having sex. If you listened closely, you could actually hear audiences shudder.

Meyers is also responsible for last year's The Holiday. This is a film that I'd talked my wife out of watching at least half a dozen times when it was in theaters and when it was first released on DVD. I did this by desperately throwing up as many other movies we should instead as I could think of. I think one time, I faked a bursting appendix to get out of watching it. Last night, it finally caught up with me. I barely survived.

This movie is so shitty, on so many different levels, I scarcely know where to begin. Let's start with the fact that Meyers didn't so much write a movie as she just spent a week or so watching other movies and copying down bits she liked. And the worst part is, she didn't for the most part crib from movies that were all that great themselves. Seriously, she ripped off Bridget Jones' Diary, Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail all in the first fifteen minutes. There are a number of scenes of Kate Winslet's character picking out movies from a huge DVD selection and I honestly think that's because, at some point during the week when she was copying down scenes from other movies, Meyers must have thought, "Oh my God! I should include a scene based on my looking for scenes! This shit practically writes itself!"

This shit had to write itself. Because Meyers certainly doesn't seem capable of the job. Sweet mascara-wearing Christ, this is a clunky script. I truly think that she could've handled the exposition better by just having the actors each read a half-page description of their characters' background straight at the camera. There's a scene toward the beginning where, during a fight, Edward Burns--and thank Zeus I didn't have to watch more than five minutes of an Edward Burns performance--gives us a handy checklist of all the faults of Cameron Diaz's character so that we can all know, "Right, well I guess these are what she's going to be working on for the rest of the film."

Neither of the romances are in any way interesting or believable. Meyers tosses in cute kids and old people to distract from the fact that neither of the romances are in any way interesting or believable. Meyers is such a shitty director that she made Jude Law un-charming, Jack Black un-funny and Cameron Diaz mind-blowingly annoying. And just let me say that any movie that wastes Kate Winslet like this deserves to be beaten to death and set on fire in an alley. Winslet is one of the best actresses going these days and I really hope that she got a great big pile of money out of this so she can go back to making movies that don't make people want to hang themselves.

So, word of advice if anyone ever tries to get you to see a Nancy Meyers film: if you absolutely can't talk your way out of it, just make sure you bring a samurai sword upon which you can impale yourself when the pain becomes too great to tolerate.