Deliver Us From Eva

"Weak"

Deliver Us From Eva Review


A "Taming of the Shrew"-inspired romantic comedy about three buddies who are so in love with three sisters that they bribe a local Lothario to romance the girls' foxy but man-less, meddling hellcat of an older sibling, "Deliver Us From Eva" is thick with unfulfilled promise.

Where there could be well-developed characters, there are empty caricatures of bossy black women and whipped black men instead. Where there should be smart comedy, there's a silly, sit-comy kidnapping scenario.

In under-thumb husband/boyfriend roles that good actors like Morris Chestnut or Terrence Howard could have added real substance to, "Eva" has cue-card-quality non-name players -- Mel Jackson (whose eyebrows move as much as his lips with every line delivery) and Dartanyan Edmonds (playing the kind of corn-row-coifed brother whose vocabulary doesn't extend much beyond the word "daaaaamn!").

And all of this is a shame because Shakespeare's story of love blossoming between an unstoppable force and a fixed object is ripe for modern urbanization -- and there's an appealing chemistry (not to mention stinging banter) between the movie's leads.

Gabrielle Union is alternately frightening and alluring as Eva, the gorgeous, daunting queen of cold shoulders who learned to be tough, protective and incredibly condescending in raising her three sisters after their parents died. LL Cool J makes a magnetic leading man as Ray, a magnetic ladies' man looking for the ultimate challenge. And the sparks that fly between them are the movie's saving grace. When they're alone together on screen, "Eva" shows unmistakable signs of sexy wit.

Although they're no Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton (who made a wonderful film version of "Shrew" in 1967) or even Julia Stiles and Heath Ledger (who starred in the so-so teen adaptation "10 Things I Hate About You"), Union and Cool J keep their characters appealingly human in spite of some cartoonish personality traits and the dim-witted story that slowly build up around them.

As down-to-earth Ray, who drives his meat delivery truck on dates because he's saving for a house, finds himself truly falling for Eva, who makes a living as L.A.'s most feared restaurant health inspector, it throws a wrench in the plans of the sisters' husbands/boyfriends, who'd hoped to see Eva so broken hearted she'd move out of town just to get away from Ray.

This begets the picture's wholly contrived last act that involves an abduction and a Big Lie the men will get caught in -- leading to the same tiresome, misogynistic so-called happy-ending in which women forgive insincerely begging men for acting unforgivably stupid and take them back. Awww, ain't that romantic?

Co-writer and director Gary Hardwick resolved the plot of his last picture -- the chatty, disingenuous men-and-love dramedy "The Brothers" -- the same way. If the guy ever learns respect for women and dedicates himself to developing a little depth in his scripts, he might still write and direct a movie that doesn't shoot itself in the foot.



Deliver Us From Eva

Facts and Figures

Run time: 105 mins

In Theaters: Friday 7th February 2003

Box Office USA: $17.3M

Distributed by: USA Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 44%
Fresh: 36 Rotten: 46

IMDB: 6.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Raymond 'Ray' Adams, as Evangeline 'Eva' Dandrige, as Ormandy, as Jacqui Dandrige, as Michael, as Kareenah Dandridge

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...

Churchill Movie Review

Churchill Movie Review

This drama about the iconic British prime minister tells a darkly personal story set over...

Gifted Movie Review

Gifted Movie Review

This is one of those films that dances right up to the edge of soapy...

Whitney: Can I Be Me Movie Review

Whitney: Can I Be Me Movie Review

Notorious British filmmaker Nick Broomfield teams up with Austrian music documentary producer Rudi Dolezal to...

The Mummy Movie Review

The Mummy Movie Review

To launch their new Dark Universe franchise, Universal has taken an approach that mixes murky...

Advertisement
My Cousin Rachel Movie Review

My Cousin Rachel Movie Review

Daphne du Maurier's 1951 mystery-romance novel has been adapted for theatre, radio, TV and film,...

Wilson Movie Review

Wilson Movie Review

It's never helpful when a comedy becomes a bit too smug about its own quirkiness....

Interlude in Prague Movie Review

Interlude in Prague Movie Review

A fictionalised story from the life of Wolfgang Mozart, this lavishly produced period drama is...

The Hippopotamus Movie Review

The Hippopotamus Movie Review

This British satirical comedy may be a bit of a mess, but since it's based...

Detour Movie Review

Detour Movie Review

This may look like a rather typical American indie thriller, but British filmmaker Christopher Smith...

Wonder Woman Movie Review

Wonder Woman Movie Review

Boldly optimistic, this action-packed adventure breathes fresh life into the DC universe with a welcome...

Baywatch Movie Review

Baywatch Movie Review

Clearly, it's a risky proposition adapting a cheesy vintage TV series for the big screen:...

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.