Posts Tagged ‘Kate Hudson’

Jennifer Aniston

Jennifer Aniston

“MOTHER’S DAY”  My rating: C- 

118 minutes  | MPAA rating: PG-13

Like its predecessors — “Valentine’s Day,” “New Year’s Eve” and the inexplicably adored  “Love Actually”  — “Mother’s Day” is low-risk, high-profit drek.

From a film producer’s point of view it’s a no brainer.  Take a half dozen interlacing plots on a central theme, populate them with big names (none of whom have to work too hard, since each is on screen for only a few minutes), pave the way with lightweight comedy and wrap it all up with a saccharine coda.

Jason Sudiekis

Jason Sudeikis

Plus, it’s a lazy moviegoer’s dream come true. There’s no commitment required because the enterprise is pure dramatic shorthand. No character or narrative arc is sustained  long enough to be anything more than a blip, and the film delivers a sentimental rush without the viewer having to invest anything.

In other words, emotional porn.

The latest from director Garry Marshall and his team of writers (Tom Hines, Lily Hollander, Anya Kochoff, Matthew Walker) follows a group of Atlanta residents as they look forward to — what else? — Mother’s Day.

Divorcee Sandy (Jennifer Aniston) is all abother because her ex (Timothy Olyphant) has wed a trophy gal half his age…and now this new stepmom is a favorite of Sandy’s two young boys.

Sisters Jesse (Kate Hudson) and Gabi (Sarah Chalke) live next door to each other and are happily estranged from their domineering and hopelessly prejudiced mother. Jesse has married an East Indian M.D. (Asaif Mandvi), while Gabi is in a same-sex relationship.

Wouldn’t you know it?  Their covers are blown when unsuspecting Mom (the great Margo Martindale) and Dad (Robert Pine) come swooping down in their RV to share Mother’s Day with the girls. (more…)

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Kate Hudson, Bill Murray

Kate Hudson, Bill Murray

“ROCK THE KASBAH” My rating: C 

100 minutes | MPAA rating: R

“Rock the Kasbah” is what the Brits call a “toss off.”

Director Barry Levinson’s latest is so lightweight that one comes away wondering if the whole project wasn’t just an excuse to hang out with some amusing people in an exotic location.

Richie Lanz (Bill Murray) is a former rock ‘n’ roll tour manager whose best years are long behind him. Now he runs scams on hopelessly untalented “singers” looking for their big break.

He lucks into a USO tour of Afghanistan using his Girl Friday (Zoe Deschenel) as the “star,” but the young lady is so appalled by Kabul’s chaos and violence that she bails, taking Richie’s passport and money with her.

Stranded in a strange world, Richie is adopted by a couple of stoner gun runners (Danny McBride, Scott Caan) who recruit him to make a delivery of ammo to a remote village.

There Richie discovers a great talent, a beautiful girl named Salima (Leem Lubany) who defies tradition and religious edict by retreating to a cave and singing her heart out. (All she knows are Cat Stevens tunes, but it’s a start.)

Richie comes up with a plan to get Salima on Afghanistan’s version of “American Idol.” Except that in doing so he will  be outraging half the nation — the male half — and putting both their lives in danger.


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