BOWFINGER (1999)

Directed By: Frank Oz
Written By: Steve Martin 
Cinematography: Ueli Steiger 
Editor: Richard Pearson 

Cast: Eddie Murphy, Steve Martin, Robert Downey Jr., Heather Graham, Christine Baranski, Jamie Kennedy, Terence Stamp, Claude Brooks, Marisol Nichols, Phill Lewis, John Cho

When a desperate movie producer fails to get a major star for his bargain basement film, he decides to shoot the film secretly around him.


This might be a letdown considering the two comedic stars at its center finally teaming up to make a film together you would expect something funnier and better.

Though pretty much the film has a good premise a terrible follow-through and jokes. As it tries to be a Hollywood satire.  Where it seems too hard to be wacky above all else. Even though it seems a little more personal for Steve Martin who wrote the script and also takes aim at satirizing Scientology and also having some humor over it seems a past relationship.

Now the film wasn’t written originally for Eddie Murphy to co-star. As it was written for a big-name star. It was never intended to be a big-name comedic star. Eddie Murphy walks away with the film in a dual role that obviously he had to have input in because he creates a memorable comedic character as the Hollywood Star he also plays look-alike Jiff and kind of stunt double.  as well as spoofing Hollywood’s spoiled paranoid star as Kit Ramsey but that role feels a bit more familiar. 

Eddie Murphy does manage to create two totally different comedic characters and make them believable. 

Truthfully this movie felt crushing to me when I first watched it. As it stars two of my favorite living stand-Up comedians written by one of them and the film still falls apart.

This film is a satire on Hollywood. Though It’s not as sharp as Martin’s precious satire on Los Angeles L.A. STORY. Though that felt like a romance and love letter compared to this film which seems more to make fun of everything and everybody. As this is more silly than witty.

Though the film is certainly ahead of Its time with some of its ideas especially when it comes to the aspect of improv. Though after a while the film feels too silly for Its Own Good. 

If this film was made in the 1980’s it would be just ok and meant more like a classic. Getting a pass just for who starred in it. But made in the Savvy 1990s. It almost plays like a throwback.

There are moments that are original and funny but they are too few and far in between. If this movie had starred anyone else it would be forgettable and much easier for me to let go of it, but coming from such great talents. It was such a huge letdown.

Heather Graham is unresistable as the sexy actress co-star who Steve martin’s director character is also sleeping with and he is disturbed to find he might not be the only one. Based on her ambition and knowledge of his ex-girlfriends this seems his attempt to trivialize that relationship and maybe that person.

Robert Downey Jr. is in the movie he plays a small but pivotal role that really has no meat to it, but this was one of his first jobs post-rehab.

What is also a letdown is the movie within the movie they seem to be filming is so terrible. Even with a star, it looks like it would be bad, but again that might be the film making fun of not only itself but all-star-driven vehicles. Where no matter how bad it might be they will be funded and there will be an audience for them.

I didn’t see the movie in theaters but I did buy the DVD without seeing it first. Because I was so sure it was going to be a knockout. It is one of my least-watched purchases. 

Though strangely over the years I have warmed a little bit to it. It’s still bad, but at least it is watchable more to me now. Hopefully, you feel the same way. 

Grade: D

THE STEPFORD WIVES (2004)

stepford_wives

Directed By: Frank Oz
Written By: Paul Rudnick
Based On The Book By: Ira Levin
Cinematography By: Rob Hahn
Editor: Jay Rabinowitz 


Cast: Nicole Kidman, Bette Midler, Roger Bart, Matthew Broderick, Glenn Close, Christopher Walken, Faith Hill, Matt Malloy, David Marshall Grant, Jon Lovitz, Kadee Strickland 


Joanna Eberhart, a wildly successful president of a TV Network, after a series of shocking events, suffers a nervous breakdown and is moved by her milquetoast of a husband, Walter, from Manhattan to the chic, upper-class, and very modern planned community of Stepford, Connecticut. Once there, she makes good friends with the acerbic Bobbie Markowitz, a Jewish writer who’s also a recovering alcoholic. Together they find out, much to their growing stupor and-then horror, that all the housewives in town are strangely blissful and, somehow… doomed. What is going on behind the closed doors of the Stepford Men’s Association and the Stepford Day Spa? Why is everything perfect here? Will it be too late for Joanna and Bobbie when they finally find out?

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