Coyote Ugly

"Grim"

Coyote Ugly Review


The latest paint-by-numbers cinematic mind-number from uber-slick schlock producer Jerry Bruckheimer ("Gone in 60 Seconds," "Armageddon," "Con Air," etc.), "Coyote Ugly" is can be summed up in three words: "Flashdance" meets "Cocktail."

Piper Perabo ("The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle") -- a wide-eyed, bee-stung beauty from central casting -- is the movie's generic ingenue, a girl named Violet from small town New Jersey who moves to New York to pursue her dreams of being a songwriter for "Whitney, Mariah, whoever..." Of course, even though she grew up just down the turnpike from Manhattan, she's as naive as a farmer's daughter and learns the hard way that peddling your demo tape to snide receptionists at record label offices isn't going to get you anywhere in the Big City.

So instead of becoming an instant music biz success, Violet finds herself working at the meat packing district's wildest road house, Coyote Ugly.

Staffed by 102-lb. sexpots who habitually shake their stuff atop the bar in size two leather pants and titty-hugging tank tops, the joint is packed wall-to-wall every night with hooting, drooling patrons that the girls tease like pole-dancers to coax drinks into them and money out of them.

Written in Screenwriting 101 style, packed with every New York City cliché in the book (her dank, dingy flat is broken into her first week in town), and overflowing with sexy young things in WonderBras who grind against each other while dancing, the first half of "Coyote Ugly" plays like it was penned by a 13-year-old boy who just discovered masturbation.For the second half, the script must have been handed off to a 13-year-old girl who thinks Britney Spears is the greatest musical talent the world has ever known, because the rest of the movie is launched by a "Face it dad, I'm not your little girl anymore" speech and built around Violet overcoming stage fright and chasing her dream of selling bubble-gum pop songs -- aided, of course, by the charming encouragement of a handsome boy (Australian actor Adam Garcia) who just knows she can do it!

And yes, Violet sings. A lot. It's an endless source of unintentional comedy because when she's slinking across the bar at Coyote Ugly, singing along to the jukebox (each Coyote girl has a gimmick, that's hers), Perabo warbles in her own, weak and gritty voice. But when belting out one of the acoustic Lilith Faire-lite ditties she hopes to sell some day, suddenly she's a honey-voiced songbird, courtesy of audio looping by jailbait country music star LeAnn Rimes (who has a cameo in the finale).

Another hearty laugh stems from the fact that "Coyote Ugly" takes place in a picturesquely gritty, fantasy version of NYC in which a 21-year-old cutie pie bartender can walk down an alley at 4 a.m. in a 15-inch skirt and knee-highs, counting her tips without a care in the world.

But then, realism isn't a high priority for director David McNally, whose only significant previous credit is a Budweiser Superbowl spot. Apparently acting ability isn't awfully important to him either. As long as Perabo can toss her shampoo commercial hair during innumerable pouty, innocent double-takes as she discovers the wild world of New York night life, McNally seem to be happy. The rest of the foxy-but-forgettable cast (Maria Bello, Izabella Miko, Bridget Moynahan and fashion model Tyra Banks) looks mighty fine, and when they move their mouths words come out. But I wouldn't call it acting.

On the respectability front, the picture's one saving grace is John Goodman, who is blue collar perfection as Violet's modest, toll-collector pop.

But even though "Coyote Ugly" is tedious, obvious and badly staged, it does have an infectious spirit. That's hardly enough to save it, but in a year full of truly awful movies aimed at the can't-wait-to-be-21 crowd, it is enough to take the sting out of having to sit through another completely unoriginal, 100-percent pure Hollywood, assembly-line product.



Coyote Ugly

Facts and Figures

Run time: 100 mins

In Theaters: Friday 4th August 2000

Box Office USA: $59.8M

Box Office Worldwide: $113.9M

Budget: $80M

Distributed by: Buena Vista Pictures

Production compaines: Jerry Bruckheimer Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 22%
Fresh: 21 Rotten: 75

IMDB: 5.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: David McNally

Starring: as Violet Sanford, as Kevin O'Donnell, as Bill, as Cammie, as Zoe, as Lil, Greg Collins as Coyote Ugly Bar Patron, Chip Chinery as Cop, as Photographer, Stephanie Hodge as Dancing Girl in Bar, Carla Alapont as Dancing Girl in Bar, as Girl at the Surprise Party, as Bidding Customer, as Gloria, as Bidding Customer, JJ Snyder as Bidding Customer, as Fiji Mermaid Worker

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Captain America: Civil War Movie Review

Captain America: Civil War Movie Review

After the formulaic thrills of The Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron, Marvel's Avengers were...

Son of Saul Movie Review

Son of Saul Movie Review

From Hungary, this year's Oscar-winning foreign film is a remarkably fresh take on the Holocaust...

Demolition Movie Review

Demolition Movie Review

With its darkly emotive themes and brittle humour, this well-made drama by Jean-Marc Vallee (Dallas...

Bastille Day Movie Review

Bastille Day Movie Review

An attempt to muscle in on Luc Besson's Taken-style of thriller, this is an odd...

Secret Cinema Presents: 28 Days Later Movie Review

Secret Cinema Presents: 28 Days Later Movie Review

Expectations are a problem with this year's Secret Cinema event. After the jaw-dropping, goosebump-inducing surprises...

Jane Got a Gun Movie Review

Jane Got a Gun Movie Review

With its grindingly low-key tension and unusual perspectives, this Western has a chance to revamp...

Criminal Movie Review

Criminal Movie Review

Almost criminally entertaining, this preposterous thriller mixes buckets of humour and emotion into the violent,...

Advertisement
The Jungle Book Movie Review

The Jungle Book Movie Review

Using remarkably photorealistic animation, this remake of the 1967 Disney classic is warm and enjoyable,...

Eye in the Sky Movie Review

Eye in the Sky Movie Review

Almost forensic in its approach, this smart thriller explores a drone strike from a variety...

Midnight Special Movie Review

Midnight Special Movie Review

Gifted director Jeff Nichols takes on another genre in his fourth film with actor Michael...

Boulevard Movie Review

Boulevard Movie Review

This dark, introspective drama hinges on one of Robin Williams' final film performances before his...

The Huntsman: Winter's War Movie Review

The Huntsman: Winter's War Movie Review

Aside from success at the box office, there was nothing about 2012's rather uneven fantasy...

Black Mountain Poets Movie Review

Black Mountain Poets Movie Review

It's fairly obvious that the cast and crew began making this film with only the...

Victoria Movie Review

Victoria Movie Review

One of the most breathtaking films of the year, this ambitious story shifts from a...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.