Valentine's Day in Los Angeles brings a series of romantic crises. A flower seller (Kutcher) has proposed to his less-than-keen girlfriend (Alba), then discovers his best friend's (Garner) boyfriend (Dempsey) is married. A phone-sex operator (Hathaway) is afraid to tell her boyfriend (Grace) what she does for a living. An romance-hating publicist (Biel) is helping her client (Dane) manage a media storm. A group of teens (Swift, Lautner, Roberts and Jenkins) are grappling with chastity. And two strangers (Roberts and Cooper) strike up a conversation on a trans-Atlantic flight.
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Thus was born the lackluster remake of 1976's "TheBad News Bears."
Once an edgy but family-friendly Little League comedy fullof cursing pre-pubescent underdogs and starring Walter Matthau as theirbooze-hound coach, this 2005 version -- starring Thornton, co-written by"Bad Santa" screenwriters, and lazily directed by the usuallycreative Richard Linklater -- has lost both its bite and its heart.
Thornton's uncharacteristically flat take on the characterof coach Walter Buttermaker -- a trailer-park bum and exterminator by tradewho once played half an inning in the pros -- has little of Matthau's cantankeroushound-dog congeniality. His "who cares" attitude toward his baseballteam of delinquents, nerds, over-eaters, immigrants and paraplegics soonbecomes humorously motivational abuse, then "win at all costs"obsessiveness, then "just have fun out there" altruism withoutmuch rationale beyond the screenplay's say-so.
Continue reading: Bad News Bears Review
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