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by Adam R. Davidson

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Welcome back, good people! Didja like the inaugural edition of Review of the Review? You did?! Swell! Let's do some more!

This week we take on Nora Ephron's cine-bomb, BEWITCHED. At the time of press (some five weeks into release), this $100+ million film (incl. marketing costs), which is averaging a "C" or "Two-&-a-half stars" from most reputable critics, has made less than $60 mil, including overseas grosses. Way to go Nora Ephron, way to go whoever still hired her after seeing LUCKY NUMBERS. You've reaped what you have blah blah blah-ed.

Still, you can't displease everyone, and some of our nation's best and brightest critics have done their best to really enjoy some crap. And they are:
- Jim Lane, Sacramento News & Review
- Glenn Whipp, U-daily Los Angeles
- Daniel Neman, Richmond Times-Dispatch

First up is Mr. Jim Lane. And just what are his trespasses?

- In the same paragraph, Lane lists among director Ephron's past triumphs MY BLUE HEAVEN and YOU'VE GOT MAIL, and goes on to say that "the Ephron sisters can point to a solid record of professionalism and literate wit." Despite the relative proximity to Hollywood, MIXED NUTS and HANGING UP apparently never made it out to Sacramento.
- Praises the film by claiming it could have been much worse "because I just can't bring myself to call the original show a "classic." The Dick Van Dyke Show, Mary Tyler Moore, Seinfeld--those were classics. But Bewitched?" As if to say "How dare a sitcom that has become engrained into the pop-culture lexicon and was one of the most popular programs of its era call itself 'classic?' Next thing you know, savages like Bob Newhart and I Dream of Jeanie will be wanting "classic" status as well! The nerve!"
- Waxes on about Kidman's gift for comedy, claiming "she has a terrific flair for it," and cites precendence for this in the one other comedy on her resumé, the thoroughly middling TO DIE FOR. Flair? Maybe one day, but for now she's about 14 pieces short.

The verdict? Delusional and idiotic. If he's being paid for his work, I suggest he keeps doing whatever it is he does that keeps real people from reading it.

Next? U-daily's Glenn Whipp. And in my estimation, that has to be a porn name.

- The Whipper begins with some damning faint praise, naming BEWITCHED as worthy fare simply because it's not THE HONEYMOONERS or CHARLIE'S ANGELS (the latter of which, in all fairness, was intentionally campy and dumb). You know, a punch in the face is preferable to a shotgun blast to the groin, but that doesn't mean I have to seek out either.
- Compares Nicole Kidman's performance to the calibre of Marilyn Monroe's, in SEVEN YEAR ITCH.
- Calls a movie based on an old TV show and written by Nora Ephron "original . . . and solid."

Verdict? Obviously mentally challenged and unfit for trial.

Last up, little Danny Neman of Richmond, VA. What did he do?

- Like fellow miscreant-at-large Jim Lane, Neman tries to elevate the film by denouncing the source material, this time calling the original TV series "marginally amusing." I gotta wonder if Lord of the Rings fans would have said the same about the book if the films had tanked. Methinks not.
- Dares to call Will Ferrell's broad comedy stylings "grandstanding," and "no less tiresome" than his stint on SNL. Honestly, I'm aghast. This . . . I have no response to. He's Will frickin' Ferrell.
- Calls the Nora Ephron script "wildly funny." I think his review is "wildly funny," but completely unintentionally.

Verdict? Menace to society, and likely to be a repeat offender. Life without parole or access to a word processor.

That's all I got for now, true believers. See you in two weeks.

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Review of the Review
Every other Thursday

Adam R. Davidson holds the critics' feet to the flame in making them accountable for the reviews that they publish.

Other Columns
Other columns by Adam R. Davidson:

Special EW Summer Re-Cap

A Sound of Thunder

XXX: State of the Union


The Perfect Man

All Columns

Adam R. Davidson
Adam R. Davidson is a struggling writer with a heart of gold and a bank account of hopes and dreams and little else. He probably knows way too much useless crap for one person's lifetime, and wears a size 8 hat.

If you have a comment, question, or suggestion, you can send a message to Adam R. Davidson by clicking here.

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