Saturday, 18 April 2009

"How To Lose Friends And Alieniate People". A Review of the 2009 Film on BLU RAY.

“…show them a film like this…”

It's hard to imagine a movie that tests your patience more than "How To Lose Friends & Alienate People" does. It's supposed to be a comedy, but you spend most of the time wincing instead of enjoying.

My wife read Toby Jones’ book and loved it - laughed a great deal – and even when he was being a complete prick, it was at least entertaining. But the film version falls flat on its face – time after time after time. And worse – it feels like it actually admires the shallow and cruel celebrity culture it’s supposed to be pillorying. You left wondering why quality people like Jeff Bridges, Gillian Anderson and Kirsten Dunst are in this dog.

Pegg doesn’t help either. He’s not handsome enough to keep women interested and too irritating for men to empathise with or admire. Had it been James McAvoy or Benjamin Chaplin in the lead role, it might have worked – they have the British charm and acting chops to pull off this kind of stunt.

But worse are the alterations to Jones’ story - the set pieces that were so funny in the book are radically changed to supposedly big up the humour, but they either don’t work, strain all believability or you’ve seen them done before - but better. Mostly – the movie just isn't that funny.

Times Square and Manhattan look beautiful on Blu Ray as our hapless hero passes them by in his big yellow taxi – as does Megan Fox in several skimpy outfits – but the film is so bad that any gain is quickly lost as you reach for the stop button and wished you’d bought/hired something else.

A real shame that it hadn’t the balls or conviction of the book - to tell it was – personal warts and all…

One to avoid I’m afraid.

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