Rebel Wilson Headlines Disappointing Romantic Musical Comedy 

 Natalie (Rebel Wilson) is a dynamic, young professional trying to make her mark on Manhattan. But between a fledgling professional career and a dating life that isn’t faring any better, the Australian architect is close to bottoming out.

It’s a miracle her optimistic spirit hasn’t been crushed, since she was raised by an emotionally-abusive mom (Jennifer Saunders) who said she’d never amount to anything.   

She has nevertheless made a few friends since moving to the States, including BFF/colleague, Josh (Adam Devine), as well as the hunky Blake (Liam Hemsworth), a billionaire who is one of her company’s clients. And her buddies include a motley crew of colorful characters.

Anybody familiar with Rebel Wilson’s work knows that she’s committed to over-the-top fare as seen in her biggest hit, Picture Perfect. While this offering fails to measure up in terms of generating laughs per minute, it does at least recreate the ambiance of her typical farce. 

The movie is directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson, a hack who has cranked out a string of mediocre comedies such as Larceny, Naked but Funny, and Stevie TV. Not a picture this critic feels comfortable recommending to any demographic. Consider that a fair warning.

Fair (1 star)

Rated PG-13 for profanity, sexuality, and a brief drug reference

Running time: 88 minutes

Production Companies: Netflix / New Line Cinema  

Distributor: Warner Brothers

 

OPENING THIS WEEK

Kam’s Kapsules

Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun

For movies opening May 24, 2019

 

WIDE RELEASES

Aladdin (PG for some action/peril) Mena Massoud stars as the title character in this classic fairytale about a street urchin vying with a power-hungry Grand Vizier for a magic lamp. Cast includes Naomi Scott, Will Smith, and Billy Magnussen.

Booksmart (R for strong sexual content and language throughout, drug use and drinking, all involving teens) Buddy comedy about a couple of strait-laced, straight-A student BFF’s (Kaitlyn Dever, Beanie Feldstein) who decide to cram four years of fun into one night on the eve of their high school graduation. Directed by Olivia Wilde, with Lisa Kudrow, Will Forte. and Jason Sudeikis.

Brightburn (R for horror violence/bloody images, and language) Sinister thriller about an alien child (Jackson Dunn) who crash lands on Earth only to wreak havoc rather than help humanity. Cast includes Elizabeth Banks, David Denman, and Matt Jones.

The Tomorrow Man (PG-13 for brief strong language and some suggestive material) John Lithgow stars in the title role as a doomsday prophet preparing for disaster with a girlfriend who is a hoarder (Blythe Danner). With Derek Cecil, Eve Harlow, and Katie Aselton.

 

INDEPENDENT & FOREIGN FILMS

Diamantino (Unrated) Carloto Cotta plays the title role in this dysfunctional family comedy about a champion soccer player forced to confront his long-estranged, evil twin sisters (Cleo Tavares and Carla Maciel about the meaning of genius. With Chico Chapas, Margarida Moreira, and Anabela Moreira.

Funny Story (Unrated) Sobering tragi-comedy about a loving father (Matthew Glave) who unintentionally disrupts his daughter’s Big Sur vacation by inviting himself along. With Nikki Limo, Todd Berger, and Jessica Diggins.

Halston (Unrated) Reverential biopic about the fashion guru of the 70s who created a business empire by taking the biggest gamble of his life. With commentary by Liza Minelli, Marisa Berenson, and Alva Chinn.

The Proposal (Unrated) Biopic about the effort to make the work of Mexico’s greatest artist available to the public.

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