Drop Dead Gorgeous Reviews
Not as shrewd as the post-Spinal Tap Christopher Guest mocku-improvs, but not as understated either which generates a number of good laughs, like Barkin getting a beer can fused to her hand following an explosion, her best friend Allison Janney constantly hitting on the film crew, and a mass vomiting outbreak among beauty queens who ate some tainted seafood. But what really sells this movie is Dunst who through her innocent ambitions and sweet demeanor make you want her to win SO BAD - she's just GOT to beat that phony Becky Leeman, god don't you just HATE HER!?!
also stars Allison Janney, Brittany Murphy, Sam McMurray, Tara Redepenning and Amy Adams.
directed by Michael Patrick Jann.
Like many movies before it, I viewed "Drop Dead Gorgeous" in this glorious tradition. Now before I go any further, I admit that sitting in front of a 40 inch plasma and sporting a sarcastic buzz inevitably affects the critical filter through which I watch a movie for better or worse. Prime example: "Escape from New York." A couple years ago, my college roommates and I decided to pop in this John Carpenter cult classic and drink like Civil War soldiers who were about to be amputated. Had I been sober, I probably would have nodded my head and gave the movie an emphatic "meh." As I rounded the corner of my third Dos Equis, however, I realized it was one of the greatest action films I'd ever seen (minus the unadulterated thrills of "Singham," but I'll get to that in another review). The point is, the drink affects the experience as much as the venue, medium or company you keep.
"Drop Dead Gorgeous" is a pretty funny movie. It's sporadically hysterical and has some darkly funny moments, but falls flat on its face as often as it achieves hilarity. In my drunken, foggy state, however, it was one of the funniest things I'd ever seen. There's just something about seeing pre-fame Kirsten Dunst, Amy Adams and Brittany Murphy competing in a small town high school beauty pageant amidst a murder spree that really resonates with the drunken degenerate in me. Shot mockumentary style and featuring cringe-worthy performances a la "The Office," the film captures a special piece of dead-end nowhere Americana that defines itself through the most trivial of events. Think "Friday Night Lights," but instead of footballs, we have plastic tiaras. These girls and their parents become so invested in the trials and tribulations of the local high school beauty pageant that they go to any length to win, even murder. Unfortunately, the film never finds its footing, never knowing how black to make its comedy.
If you want my advice, try downing three shots of Wild Turkey and inviting over a couple friends before embarking on this late-90s tour de force. In the right company and state of mind, you can enjoy any movie. Except "Battlefield Earth." Stay as far away from that one as you can.