All entries for Friday 21 December 2007

December 21, 2007

How To Lose Friends and Alienate People

*It should be noted that this film is due for release in 2008. I was invited to a test screening and so so the film may yet be improved.

Simon Pegg is one of Britain's better film actors at the moment. Shaun of the Dead? Fantastic. Hot Fuzz? Brilliant. But these films also had decent, funny scripts and gave Pegg a lot to play around with. Along comes the big Nike advert that was Run, Fatboy, Run , and there was disappointment. OK, it was amusing. But it felt like originality and comedy were sacrificed on the altar of the American Movie Audience. I think How To Lose Friends And Alienate People (let's call it HTLF from now on shall we?) is yet another attempt to penetrate the American market. And, while funny, it is both flat and cliched.

Simon Pegg is average, Megan Fox is beautiful but rubbish, Jeff Bridges needs work  and, thankfully, Kirsten Dunst and Gillian Anderson are much better than expected.

The plot is basic: young(ish) hack working for the  English equivalent of the National Enquirer is noticed by a boss of the equivalent of Vogue Magazine and is offered a job. The crude and lewd Simon Young is about to enter the strict, corporate, dog-eat-dog world of the American Magazine. His lazy, misogynistic (and apparently stupid) character is paired up with his antithesis: Alison (Dunst) a clever woman writing a novel on the side while she makes her way in the business. 

Can Simon Young convince her that he's more than just a dirty idiot? Can his integrity survivive? Will he ever get it on with Bob the Transsexual?  

All the usual cliches are present. The only "originality" seems to be manifested in the heavy use of cocain and penises. Not a great film, but worth a watch if you're bored. I hope Pegg's next film is better. 


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