Here there be monsters (socratic) wrote,
Here there be monsters

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Laws of suck

Like most men I am not a big fan of the romantic comedy. Usually they are imbalanced either towards the romantic or the comedic, with the other element serving as not much more than dead weight dragging the film down. Most of them aspire to, and achieve, not much more than mediocrity. There are the occasional exceptions, like Defending Your Life , where the two elements mesh almost perfectly and the movie manages to be both hilarious and heart-warming. Every genre has its great films though, and if I'm not going to be watching a masterpiece I'd rather be watching a true comedy or a sci-fi flick than a RomCom. At least much of Sci-Fi aspires to be great, even if it so frequently fails.

On the other hand there are those exceptional films, and I'm pleased to say that Laws of Attraction is such a film. It is exceptionally awful. Incredibly terrible. Dreck beyond your wildest imagination.

It really really sucks.

Now perhaps you think that the idea of putting Julianne Moore and Pierce Brosnan together in a romantic comedy would be a good one. I don't necessarily agree; I like both actors (Moore more than Brosnan) but they don't lend themselves to the same sorts of projects. This film's problems have nothing to do with casting, though. They're almost entirely found in the script. The script is crap. Crappy crap crap crap crapenstein crapworth III. It's just awful. Every joke is a clunker. Every romantic moment forced and irrational. I'd list every misstep here but I'd have to type up the entire script. It's like someone took a bad sitcom pilot, gave it a high B-list cast and a huge budget, and then shat on the film before running it through the projector.

Of course the cast has no idea what to do with this material, because it should be in the hands of Tom Papa not Pierce Brosnan. Brosnan just looks bored and slightly irritated, like he's thinking about the nice things the paycheck will buy and hoping that nobody actually sees this thing. Moore seems to be trying to elevate the material but it's like lifting dead weight and she comes off as forced, shrill, and confused. It's sad because Moore is a good comic actress even in not so great projects, and there is no reason for her to be in this movie.

In fact there are only two rational reasons for this movie to exist. One is that it was the brainchild of some executive who hired a writer without checking references and is now washing cars on Sunset Boulevard rather than running a movie studio. The other is that Hollywood was trying to destroy the independent movie scene. While Pierce Brosnan is a Hollywood guy (Jimmy Bond doesn't do Indie) Moore has done a lot of good Indie work and is probably one of the bigger stars in the scene. She is so dreadful in this that it makes you not only not want to go out and see good movies like The Hours or The Big Lebowski but it kind of makes you wish those movies didn't exist just so that this one wouldn't have been made. They also throw in Indie queen Parker Posey as an irritating designer who Moore's character tells "You're young, you still have choices" in a motherly tone. Moore and Posey are 8 years apart in age.

On the plus side the lighting is very competent and the photography is only sub-average.

On the Baldwin Rating Scale:

Tags: hollywood, movie reviews
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