It's not really appropriate for kids and adults will want to rip their ears off at the lame antics and pathetic excuse for a plot. The only thing worth noting here is the appearance of the original TV show's stars (who all, strangely, appear to have aged little in the intervening years), but that's hardly reason enough to suffer through this dog.
A darkly black comedy of the trailer trash variety, Waking Up in Reno director Jordan Brady mostly misses with this study of working class malaise, the prison system, teen pregnancy, and closeted homosexuality. Well, Brady gets an A for effort in trying to get across such a broad collection of social messages, but his execution is merely a solid C.
Continue reading: Confessions Of An American Girl Review
Knowing full well that the audience for "What a Girl Wants" would consist almost entirely of 'tween girls too young to recognize its artificiality and paint-by-numbers banality, director Dennie Gordon doesn't even bother trying to make the picture palpable to anyone with more discerning tastes.
A lollypops-and-rainbows adventure about a free-spirited New York teenager (the Nickelodeon-launched Amanda Bynes) running away to London to find the blue-blooded daddy she's never known (Colin Firth), it's a movie that virtually ignores its raison d'etre of father-daughter bonding in favor of stock tourist footage (with Bynes hanging off the back of a double-decker bus), music-video shopping montages, rivalries with snooty soon-to-be step-sisters, and flirtations with an unthreateningly cute working-class boy (Oliver James) who plays guitar and rides a motorcycle.
Growing up in a fifth-floor Chinatown walkup with her bohemian wedding-singer single mom (Kelly Preston), Daphne Reynolds (Bynes) has always heard the story of how her parents met as globetrotting college kids and were married by a Bedouin tribal chief before going to England to "get married for real" (the film makes several such offensively ethnocentric gaffes). But when his crusty family sent her packing and lied to the young Lord Henry Dashwood (Firth), saying she had left him, mom went back to the U.S. pregnant and Henry matured into a stiff-upper-lip politician.
Continue reading: What A Girl Wants Review
'Smalls Change (Meditations Upon Ageing)' arrives in April.
The two awards have made for a great 72nd birthday present for the country music icon.