Loves her childhood friend but he
Loves Cameron Diaz.
Rating: 2.5 out of 5
Sportswriters are people too, Julia Roberts
I have to say something before I launch into a review of this decent but thoroughly average movie.
What is it that people have against sportswriters? Like seriously, we’re people too. We have opinions and sure, sometimes we act like conceited blowhards and we never shut up, but we are people. We love something, and we find a way to make a living within the confines of that niche.
I bring this up because My Best Friend’s Wedding dumps on sportswriters constantly. This doesn’t really have much to do with the movie itself, but when Julia Roberts turns to Dermot Mulroney (an attractive, talentless hunk who will forthwith be referred to as Cardboard Box) and says, “You travel 52 weeks a year for your stupid job…it’s not a grown up job,” well, I took affront to that. One, Julia, you’re exaggerating and you know it. At most, an established sportswriter travels 48 weeks a year. Learn your maths. And two, it is a grown-up job, in the sense that grown-ups do it and get paid (hahaha) for it. So dump on sportswriting all you want. I’ll stop now. No sense in bloviating about a lost cause.
Wait, I’m here to review a rom-com
ANYWAYYYY, I had no problem with My Best Friend’s Wedding (we’ll get back to Cardboard Box in a moment). It was enjoyable and happy-go-lucky, though painfully predictable. Again, I believe this will be a dominant theme in RomCom 2015 – the idea that most rom-coms are generally formulaic and hardly bring anything new to the table. One goal of this project is to determine whether this stereotype is true or false; My Best Friend’s Wedding was close to proving me wrong but nonetheless settled into the recesses of my memory, soon to be forgotten.
Julia Roberts is quite lovely as Julianne and Cameron Diaz is solid as Kimmy, I suppose (though I feel like Kimmy had a lot more to offer than the writers realized), but this movie was won and lost by the two male leads. Some guy named Rupert Everett, who apparently has a career I’ve never heard of, plays Greg, Julianne’s gay editor. Everett does a very British job about it, and it works very well. I found his character funny and different and every scene where he poses as Julianne’s husband is quite funny.
The other male lead was Cardboard Box. Prior to this movie, I had never heard of him. His most recent film project is called The D Train (insert every dick joke imaginable right now), which holds a 45% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. He was in Insidious Chapter 3 (not surprised), August: Osage County (wait, what?), The Grey (uh-oh, I liked that movie), and Burn After Reading. Frankly, after a quick rundown, I’m surprised that he has such notable roles. Because Cardboard Box is a cardboard box, only less talented.
I cannot find the words to describe this wooden performance. Alone, it slashes a star from my rating of the movie. His facial expressions are stupid, the few times he shows emotion are laughable, and I think he threw off the entire pace of the film by failing to exhibit any real ability to convey feeling or sentiment. WHY IS HE IN THIS MOVIE? Or any movie, for that matter.
I’m not one to judge on a single performance, though. I will give Cardboard Box a second chance someday. I will watch one of his starring roles in another film one day and determine whether he is actually a cardboard box or a human person at least attempting to engage in the art of theater. For now, Cardboard Box is stuck on the D Train.
Julia Roberts was pretty good
I don’t know much about Julia Roberts other than that she’s an actress. I have a vague idea that she’s famous for more reasons than that. Who knows. The point is, I found her to be very watchable in this movie. She was funny and actually acted (take notes, Cardboard Box). And the scene where she steals the bread truck made me chortle.
She also had the best line in the movie, when she has to cover for why Greg happens to be in town on the weekend of Cardboard Box’s wedding.
“He’s racing back to New York, he just came in for a few hours to um…to, uh…fuck me.”
On its own, it doesn’t seem too special, but when watching it in the movie it elicited pangs of laughter. Roberts’ delivery was excellent. In fact, had it not been for Cardboard Box and Cameron Diaz’s one-dimension character, this would have been a very good movie.
Loud noises: When Harry Met Sally has the fake orgasm scene, which is hilarious, but it started a trend that continued through that movie and into this one: loud people in public. It’s only been two movies, but there have been at least six instances where I’ve counted the main protagonists making a scene/talking way too loudly in restaurants or other public places. Is this a rom-com trope? We shall see. I still have 28 more of these freaking things to watch.
Holy shit, Paul Giamatti is a bellman: Yes, Paul Giamatti is in this movie as the hotel bellman. He shares a particularly good scene with Roberts, who, upon realizing she’s a psychotic witch out to ruin Cardboard Box’s life for her own desires, decides to step outside her hotel room for a smoke. Paul Giamatti walks by and shares the cigarette with her and espouses some philosophical mumbo-jumbo; I can’t remember what he talked about, only that I enjoyed the moment.
Karaoke: There is a scene near the beginning where Cameron Diaz sucks at karaoke. Whether she really sucks or was only acting (again, take notes, Cardboard Box), she sounded like YouTube sensation Ice JJ Fish. If you’ve never heard of Ice JJ Fish, you, my friend, are missing out on some magic (earplugs recommended).
A clip from my notes:
Sappiness Rating: 7/10. This movie had sappy all over it. It was funny at times, though, so I’ll give it a pass. And the sappy ending involved Greg, who was the best part of the movie anyway.
How did I write 1,000 words about this average movie? That’s what I’m asking myself. Maybe it wasn’t average, maybe it was more than that. Maybe after watching Gigli (stay tuned for Friday!) or From Justin to Kelly, I’ll appreciate this one more. As for now, My Best Friend’s Wedding is an average rom-com held up by Julia Roberts and Rupert Everett (who is someone, I think), and held down by Cardboard Box.