Allison Dean

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Almost Married Review


Weak

There's basically just one joke in this scruffy British comedy, and it's dragged out painfully for the better part of an hour before the script finally clicks into gear. Likeable actors help hold our interest until then, giving realistic performances even if everything about the movie is deeply implausible. And at least the final act has some genuine wit in it.

It starts three months before the wedding of Kyle and Lydia (Philip McGinley and Emily Atack), as Kyle's best man Jarvis (Mark Stobbart) takes him on a series of stag-night activities including naked paint-balling and a visit to a brothel. When Kyle discovers that he has a sexually transmitted disease, he decides not to tell Lydia. But how can he avoid sex until the final all-clear test in 90 days time? Jarvis offers several elaborate excuses, while Kyle chooses a more subtle approach. But even without knowing what's up, Lydia begins to doubt whether they should get married.

First of all, who plans a stag night three full months before the wedding? This is the kind of boneheaded logic that infuses the entire film and leaves us unable to believe anything that happens. Obviously, the real problem in this relationship isn't that Kyle has contracted an STD, but that he's unable to be honest with the woman he plans to marry. Writer-director Ben Cookson never even touches on this, instead barrelling on with the goofy antics.

Continue reading: Almost Married Review

Where's Marlowe? Review


OK
If you're going to make yet another mockumentary of something, it's good to pick a topic that hasn't been done to death, at least, and that's where Where's Marlowe? manages to succeed. Parroting the private eye genre, with Miguel Ferrer as our Sam Spade wannabe, a documentary crew follows him around until it becomes obvious he is so hapless that he is going to lose his whole business. To salvage the situation, the crew decides to join Ferrer's crew and help him finish his last few cases -- ensuring they still have a movie but breaking the detached and unbiased role of a documentary crew. Up until this point, the movie's a lot of silly fun, goofing on both documentary and P.I. cliches with aplomb. But after this point the movie becomes all about the actual case... alternately meaningless, confusing, and just plain stupid. Where's Marlowe? Who cares?
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