27 Dresses (2008)

Rated: PG-13 for language, some innuendo and sexuality
Length: 107 minutes
Grade: D+C+DD=D
Budget: $30 million
Box Office: $77 million U.S., $76 million Intl., $ million DVD

Directed by: Anne Fletcher, whose only previous directing was Step Up, although she’s worked on a bunch of movies, and produced The Wedding Planner.
Written by: Aline Brosh McKenna, who wrote Devil Wears Prada, Laws of Attraction, and Three to Tango.
Starring: Katie Heigl, James Marsden, Malin Akerman, and Edward Burns.

Always a bridesmaid, never a bride. That’s Jane’s life story, but now that her deceiving sister has scammed her way into being engaged to the boss Jane secretly loves, and she even wants Jane to plan the wedding, she has to decide what to do. Oh, yeah, and the guy who writes all the wedding columns she adores is a jaded jerk who happens to have the hots for her.

Entertainment Value: D+
Only grading it a D+ was generous. I’ve only seen her in two films, but Malin Akerman is already on my list of people whose movies I refuse to watch. Heartbreak Kid was the other one. This movie was far less funny than it could have been, and all the major opportunities for good plot moves went the wrong way. The best thing about it were the credits, which were actually fairly cute. And the opening DVD menu has weird flecks on it that seem like they’re on your TV.

Superficial Content: C+
Drugs/Alcohol C, Sex/Nudity C, Violence B, Language C
Given that it’s a romantic comedy, it’s fairly clean. Language, sexual situations and jokes, people drinking alcohol at weddings, and some suggestive attire are the only issues here. PG-13 is correct.
Significant Content: D
Jane is portrayed as a barren doormat for other people because she brings joy to them by helping them enjoy their weddings. When she finally does confront her sister, this is treated like a bad thing. You can tell who you love by kissing them. Rather than any one thing, it was more the death of a thousand paper cuts for me with the substance here. When the movie acted like something was right, I thought it was wrong, and vice versa. I will grudgingly admit that the whole premise of the movie is to move a relationship toward marriage, so I guess that’s a good note.

Artistic/Thought Value: D
A mish-mash of a thousand other dating and wedding movies with nothing particularly unique to offer here, this was an interesting concept bungled into mediocrity.

Discussion Questions:
~Think of some situations in this movie where honesty would have averted problems.
~What is the Biblical pattern for confronting someone who is sinning? Do you think that Jane followed it? Did she do anything wrong in your opinion? If the purpose of confrontation is to provoke repentance, was the confrontation here successful?
~How important is kissing to love and a strong marriage?
~Did Kevin lie to Jane? Is there a difference between allowing someone to believe an error and leading them into it?
~In what ways is Jane living in a fantasy world? Is her life dysfunctional or a proper use of her gifts to bless people? What would happen if more people were like her? What would happen if more people took the advice of this movie to be more into themselves? Do we have a selfishness deficit right now in America?
~What do you think of Kevin interviewing her and taking pictures to use in a story without telling her or getting her permission first? Is this honorable behavior? Is journalism generally honorable, in your opinion?
~Can you tell whether you’ve done the right thing by how you feel about it afterward?
~Do you know anyone in your life like Jane? Tess? Who are you more like?

Overall Grade: D
Annoying, not cute, from menu to movie.

No comments: