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Thursday, 31 January 2019

Retro Review: Pootie Tang (2001)

Pootie Tang
Cast: Lance Crouther, Jennifer Coolidge, Wanda Sykes, Robert Vaughn, J.B Smoove, Chris Rock
Genre: Comedy
U.S Box Office Gross: over $3 million

Plot: cool guy Pootie Tang is a crime-fighting recording artist. Despite the fact his strange style of speech is understood by a select few, he becomes a hero to the children he protects

'Far From Patooey, Yet Not Hilarious Enough Either'

As far as comedy movies go, Pootie Tang is as scattershot as it is largely boring and following in the tradition of comedy TV sketches which were given the big screen treatment, such as a Night At The Roxbury, Coneheads, this one sadly underwhelms as well. 

Based on the initial 5 min skit on The Chris Rock Show, the laughs, some courtesy of Wanda Sykes and Chris Rock, are few yet barely and well-earned and whilst it has this surreal, unique feel, this is more of a one-joke affair. It has been damned by Variety's Todd McCarthy as 'amateurish', although concept-wise, it is something one mustn't take seriously at face value and that it's very low brow. 

The main character of Pootie is a triple threat: a musician, actor and folk hero all rolled into one and man of many daring outfits and who utters words that are based on or are reminiscent of hip hop and blaxploitation movies that makes him come across as one cool dude. His public service announcement efforts have led to Lector Corporation's profits to tumble and with that, Dick Lector enlists his temptress/femme fatale to take down Pootie, steal his belt and force him to do liquor ads & destroy his clean-cut image. 

Pootie Tang is like Austin Powers, only minus the wit and jokes and consistent humour, but for the cherry pie scene and Chris Rock dressed as a corn, this should have amounted to a whole lot more and better as well. Another issue is the sketchy and rather unflattering treatment of women and the use of terms, ho*s and b****es, which did take away some of my enjoyment. When it came to the performances, Wanda Sykes's Biggie Shorty with that red hair made me laugh on occasions & whose goal is to sleep with Pootie, whilst Chris Rock was all right; although I wished the supporting characters were utilised better, rather than just shoehorning them into the film.  

Final Verdict:

Being a satire, the film isn't too bad and thus, it deserves several rewatches from me; I just wished it had been a tad funnier and even at 81 mins, the pacing is too slow, it made Pootie Tang feel like a 2-hour movie.


Monday, 28 January 2019

Mini Movie Review: & Then There Was You (2013) #badmovies

& Then There Was You 
Romantic Drama

The DVD cover of this movie is so misleading, it gives off the impression that this is a rom-com or romantic drama - yet it is anything but that. & Then There Was You is neither romantic or a rom-com. I tuned in for those reasons, and yet what I got was a rather sombre and poorly developed story, occasionally mean-spirited with underdeveloped characters. A man announces to his wife he is leaving her and that he is leading a secret life, the now former wife hits it off with a new guy, who has secrets of his own too. I like Garcelle Beauvais and whilst it is nice to see her in serious roles, I hate to say it but she just wasn't the right fit and I'd rather see her in a proper rom-com, much like with Gabrielle Union. This indie romantic drama is so lifeless, devoid of genuine romantic tension, the male and female leads in Beauvais and Brian J. White just can't generate enough chemistry together, no thanks to their underwritten roles which fails to emotionally connect with the viewer and the plot becomes so drawn out and too bleak and depressing, it loses its way after 10 mins. To make matters worse, some of the music in this film sounds out of place in certain scenes, the Black male characters are portrayed as liars, cheaters and White's so-called good charlatan turns out to be a dog. The White guy character was okay though. Surprising to learn this misleading movie being touted as romantic was directed by a woman.

Is It Worth Watching?

Sadly no


Sunday, 27 January 2019

Mini Retro Review: Universal Soldier II: Brothers In Arms (1998) #badmovies

Universal Soldier II: Brothers In Arms

Less-than-stellar unofficial and straight to video sequel to 1992's modest sci-fi action flick starring Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren sees Matt Battaglia and a horrible peroxide blond, Jeff Wincott. Former (American) footballer- turned- actor Battaglia has the looks and muscles for an action movie star, yet little charisma & comes across as stiff in his performance (although whether that was intentional or not, I don't know). The action is bland, so routine, unmemorable and nothing new that you haven't seen elsewhere and the story is throwaway and so disposable. Wincott doesn't get to display his martial arts skills and in Brothers In Arms, it's apparent that this Canadian produced offering is nothing more than a pilot for a proposed Universal Soldier TV series, - which didn't materialise, as opposed to a straightforward proper follow-up film. That & it's a below mediocre one too.

Is It Worth Watching?

Not really


Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Retro Review: Intersection (1994)

Cast: Richard Gere, Sharon Stone, Lolita Davidovich, Martin Landau, David Selby, Jennifer Morrison
Genre: Thriller
U.S Box Office Gross: over $21 million

Plot: A man has to choose between his wife of 16 years, or his new love

'Takes A Wrong & Dull Turn For The Worse'

Originally adapted from the 1970s French film & novel, Les Choses de la Vie (The Things In Life), Intersection is a U.S remake set in Vancouver, Canada; architect Vincent Eastman is married to his wife, Sally and they have a child, but who is also having an affair with another woman, a magazine writer. He is tormented by the struggle of choosing between the two. 

Of note, Jennifer Morrison, who went on to star in the Fox hit medical drama, House plays the young daughter of Vincent and Sally's in Megahan and the film's test market screenings had two erotic sex scenes between Gere and Davidovich, but these were eventually (and sadly) edited out.

Intersection came out at a time when Richard Gere's appeal continued to fade, right after the success of Pretty Woman in the early 1990s and Sharon Stone wanted to show that Basic Instinct was no one-off and fluke when it came to box office movies - yet Intersection became a stain in their somewhat ambivalent careers and after the film's release, their careers never recovered after that. Stone isn't known for playing subtle, vulnerable women and whilst she tries to impart some range, it just seems that she doesn't display more of the emotional traits that are necessary. Although credit to her for going against type as the woman, Sally being 'played' and toyed with by Vincent. Lolita Davidovich exists as nothing more than the woman that Vincent falls for and is utterly void of characterisation in the role that Sharon Stone is mostly known for (and one Stone herself could have been cast in). With Richard Gere, again, both his casting and performance were jaded, lacking in energy and it was not remarkable and like Stone, he doesn't exhibit, nor exude the emotional aspects in a film such as this especially. With Vincent, there was little to no empathy I felt towards him. For an architect, he is dimwitted  & again, Gere never really brings his character out of his shell, when and as expected. 

All three performers have never been known for playing small, subtle characters and ones supposedly with depth,- and in watching Intersection, it easily shows. The onscreen pairing of Gere as Vincent and Stone as Sally just never really lights up. In addition, the story is so padded and the plot is conceived in such an uninspired fashion with rarely any semblance.

It is also dubbed as an erotic thriller; however, the film lacks any sort of drive and willingness to challenge its characters in ways that surprise, shock and stun us as a thriller. As a result, Intersection is a soulless and almost nothing ride where its journey is heading towards, well practically nowhere, or be it a dead end. As illustrated towards the end of the movie. It creates so many problems but never managing to resolve each of them. 

By making the car crash as an afterthought, instead of being the central idea to build the story and its characters around it, and by adding more thrills and tension in areas where it needed more of, it becomes a mediocre and dreary doomed romance. It awkwardly stumbles along and as it went on, the more disinterested I became and the sooner I wanted it to end.    

Final Verdict:

Though of course had it had a better lead than Richard Gere, and perhaps also an actress for Sharon Stone too, Intersection would probably be a tad more enjoyable. As such it never becomes involving as it wants to be and despite its efforts, it is all squandered. 

As theatrical and cinema-released thrillers go, Intersection is clearly and easily one of the sheer worst excesses that existed. 


Monday, 21 January 2019

Retro Review: Some Kind of Wonderful (1987)

Some Kind of Wonderful
Cast: Eric Stoltz, Mary Stuart Masterson, Lea Thompson, Craig Sheffer, John Ashton, Elias Koteas
Genre: Romantic Drama
U.S Box Office Gross: over $18 million

Plot: When Keith goes out with Amanda, the girl of his dreams, Amanda's ex-boyfriend plans to get back at Keith. Meanwhile, Keith's best friend tomboy, Watts, realises she has feelings for Keith

'Some Kind Of... Modest '80s Teen Rom Drama'

Back in 1987, John Hughes, who had previously helmed the likes of The Breakfast Club and Pretty In Pink, took another crack at the so-called popular teen falling in love with the misfit/underdog in Some Kind of Wonderful: a film in which over 30 years on, has become part of the teenage canon, despite being derided as a gender swap version of Pretty In Pink and with the same director at the helm, Howard Deutch. 

A love triangle develops between a boy who is attracted to a pretty girl, but the boy's female best friend suddenly develops feelings for him. Artist and student Keith is oblivious to the fact that so-called tomboy Watts not only has a crush on him but that she has fallen in love with him too. Complications arise further when Keith dreams of being with the attractive Amanda Jones, and that Amanda's ex & rich boy, Hardy wants her back and sees Keith as nothing more than his nemesis. 

Watts comes across as confident, defiant who wears a leather jacket and rocking that rock chick-look - yet underneath it, all is an insecure girl who can't muster up the courage to express how she truly feels to Keith. Mary Stuart Masterson plays Watts so well and who is cool and the tomboy type who is into the same or similar things as guys and Masterson delivers her best onscreen performance; and one that really should have led to bigger and better roles. Eric Stoltz (originally the first choice for Back to the Future's Marty McFly, before Michael J.Fox became the series mainstay) is effective, without really exploding on screen. I mean, he was okay, but he was also bland in a way too and I expected a greater performance from him in a drama that is heralded by many of one of the best that deals with teen romances and Keith is far from a compelling character, nor one that made a major impact. 

Lea Thompson has been an actress, who especially through Back to the Future, has been a major player in the early to mid-1980s Hollywood movie scene, but who has seen major movie roles dry up over the decades. Her character, Amanda is not a villain per se, rather she tries to be a good friend to Keith, whilst being unaware her current squeeze is, in fact, cheating on her. The movie, thankfully, avoids the mistake of making Amanda a shallow, b****y type of girl and Thompson makes her out to be redeemable when she could have so easily been undesirable. The characters, as a whole, are less cliched and stereotypical, due to the performances which range from respectable to impressive (but for probably say Stoltz) across the board.

I finally and eventually got round to watching Some Kind of Wonderful: normally, this is not the type of movie I'd get excited for and it is also one that wouldn't have appealed to me back in the 1980s. This is a conventional romantic drama that whilst it is argued both the female characters are underdeveloped, which they are, Watts for me was the most interesting out of the two, whilst as admirable as Lea Thompson is here, it can be disputed that she makes Amanda far too much of a sweet nice girl. Me personally, she fared all right. 

Canadian actor, Elias Koteas plays the so-called bad boy who is friends with Keith, whilst Craig Sheffer revels as the bad boy, whose performance was rather appealing. 

Final Verdict:

Over 30 years have passed and Some Kind of Wonderful still holds up and Howard Deutch, who has mostly been a deficient director with his efforts, manages to get the best out of his then-young cast.

It's not a bad effort and as much as I wished it could have gone a little deeper in the dramatics and expanded a bit more on Watts and Amanda's troublesome boyfriend, Hardy, there wasn't literally one moment throughout that I disliked. The film's main asset is Mary Stuart Masterson, whose turn gives it and her role, some pathos and nuance. 

Some Kind of Wonderful is a solid-yet tightly held teen-based drama that gets better as it goes on. 


Saturday, 19 January 2019

Mini Retro Review: Beautiful Joe (2000) #badmovies

Beautiful Joe
Romantic Drama

A romantic drama starring Billy Connolly and Sharon Stone, who by this point, her career took a further turn for the worst. A guy named Joe from Dublin is diagnosed with a brain tumour & finds his wife in bed with another man, she wants a divorce, Joe later meets up with a single mother, Hush (real name Alice) up in Louisville, who is also a scam artist. They bond together, Joe bonds with the kids and later falls for Hush. 2000's Beautiful Joe was noted for being the first Sharon Stone film not to be released in UK cinemas and U.S theaters. Ally McBeal's' Gill Bellows Southern accent and performance bordered on farcical as a stereotypical southern hick and it's a shame to think that an actress in Sharon Stone, who was once touted as a major star, ought to have had a better movie career than the one that she ended up with; since Total Recall and Basic Instinct, she's been in too many bombs, critical and commercial flops (remake of Gloria, Catwoman, The Specialist, Intersection to name but a few, although Sphere wasn't bad). Her character undergoes too many hairstyle & wig changes in one film and Beautiful Joe is a routine rom-drama without much in the way of romantic chemistry between Billy Connolly and Sharon Stone, nor of a driven story. Contrary to critics, this wasn't wholly unwatchable; however, in the right hands, this would have turned out far better.

Is It Worth Watching?



Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Mini Retro Review: The Killing Machine (1994) #badmovies

The Killing Machine

Do not let the poster fool you - this is not the action-packed fest this movie wants you to believe it is. An ex-hitman is kidnapped and is turned into an assassin. He then develops feelings towards a woman who is supposedly one of his potential targets. The fight scenes are nothing you haven't seen before in any other Jeff Wincott and martial arts actioner, whilst the action, in general, is almost non-existent & verging on less than satisfying. The plot is similar to Universal Soldier, but is nowhere as fun and entertaining and is blandly conceived with mostly bad dialogue being spewed and most of the movie is in pitch Black. Like many of Wincott's flicks, but for say Martial Law 2 and Mission of Justice, The Killing Machine doesn't play to his strengths, nor does he display his martial arts abilities fully. There is not enough great action and is more of a thriller and so for martial arts action junkies, there are very little scenes in that department that would make this a worthy recommendation. For an action film, this is unbelievably boring.

Is It Worth Watching?



Monday, 14 January 2019

Retro Review: So Close (2002) #Hongkongcinema

So Close (aka Zik- joeng tin- si)
Cast: Shu Qi, Vicki Zhao, Karen Mok, Song Seung-heon
Genre: Action
Hong Kong Box Office Gross: over $800 million

Plot: A conflict of interest between two high-kicking assassin sisters is complicated when they are pursued by the criminals who hired them and a high-kicking female cop

'Close, Yet Oh So Far'

I could see Corey Yuen's Western influences and traits in The Transporter starring Jason Statum, as well as The Matrix running through this film; it's not so much less Yuen and a little bit more of John Woo in its slick production and choreography. Although I'm not really a fan of post-mid-1990s Hong Kong action films, So Close is a tad better than most offerings, and still, as an action martial arts film, it is disappointing with an over-reliance on CGI and wire work-based action scenes and a surprisingly tame narrative.

The comparisons made with 2000's Charlie's Angels is a little odd, with the only resemblances being the girls use martial arts and the films themselves have female action protagonists.

The downsides to this film are the romance part, which bored me and I could care less for it and the middle part of the story doesn't explode. I would have also liked a bit more action, the tonality is off-key and at times, the melodrama, similar to the one in She Shoots Straight, was overdone. Zhao Wei is not bad, whilst Karen Mok has screen presence and shows her versatility in the action stakes. Both Zhao Wei and Karen Mok have a Stephen Chow connection, as they each shared the spotlight with the comedic actor; Shu in Shaolin Soccer and Mok in The God of Cookery. Performances-wise, I liked them, but the CGI thing and the lack of high-quality action scenes I've come to expect from a director in Yuen really lessened my enjoyment of So Close.

The individual origin stories of the sisters and the female cop are just not well developed, that as much as I tried to engage in the drama and the plot, it just wasn't strong or believable enough. The plot twist with the murder frame-up could have used a bit more work and it's a shame that despite some good performances, the actors were let down by the script and the action is mostly decent at best, but is not exceedingly great. Add to that that the editing is haphazard (which is unheard of by his usual standards), there is that underlying sense that Yuen, an action director and choreographer of whom I admire, was fuelled by and opted for style over substance and going for that John Woo flashy feel, which under Yuen here, isn't a good match for him. Yuen is better being Corey Yuen, but by mimicking or going for that Woo style and the slo-mo shots, the end result is not as particularly good.

The plot twists were confusing to boot and made little sense; the two girls, who came across to me like the bad guys (though that was the impression I was receiving) infiltrate a computer system and after gaining access, hell breaks loose. A female cop in Kong enters the fray and the girls are pursued by Kong and Chow Lui's brother who hired the girls and who now wants them dead.

As a fan of Hong Kong action movies of the 1980s and 1990s, I wonder whether this sub-standard quality action flick is too good enough for fans of martial arts action films that have a rewatchability factor; well, as far as I am concerned, this is two steps down for Yuen-Kwai who has delivered far better. 

Final Verdict:

As Corey Yuen films go, this is one of his weaker efforts that when compared to the excellent She Shoots Straight and Yes Madam!, this one underwhelms and it feels not very impressive and is rather hackneyed. Although it fares a tad better than say, DOA, which isn't saying much either. The CGI-based action scenes also took away from some of my enjoyment, but the final third scene was rather good.

Additionally, lacking in wit and self-awareness, it would have benefited So Close a good deal had these aspects been considered and the film had not taken itself too seriously.


Sunday, 13 January 2019

Retro Review: A Night At The Roxbury (1998)

A Night At The Roxbury
Cast: Will Ferrell, Chris Kattan, Molly Shannon, Mark McKinney, Colin Quinn
Genre: Comedy
U.S Box Office Gross: over $30 million

Plot: Two dim-witted brothers dream of owning their own dance club or at least getting into the coolest & most exclusive club in town, The Roxbury 

'Going Out? Just Stay At Home Instead'

I hate to admit it, but much like with Good Burger and many other Saturday Night Live-based movies, but for the exception of Wayne's World, A Night At The Roxbury struggles and fumbles its way, no thanks to underdeveloped characters, with little in the way of overly decent jokes and slapstick and humour that is far from hearty and hilarious, as well as making a movie based on a sketch piece and stretching it out and not incorporating more charm, and neither is it executed well. The premise, the idea is an entertaining one, based on a TV sketch piece, but for one dance scene with Amber's ''This Is Your Night'' playing in the background, most of the jokes, gags, repetitive mentions of Emilio Estevez and slapstick, didn't strike me as amusing and amusingly consistent and there wasn't truly one turning point in the film where it felt like it was going somewhere. It just wasn't.

Steve (pre-Hollywood movie star & then current SNL member, Will Ferrell) and Doug (Chris Kattan) are two club-lovin' & head-boppin' brothers who succeed in amusing one another, rather than scoring with the ladies on the dance floor. After several failed attempts at gaining access at the Roxbury, forgotten movie actor, Richard Grieco as himself, helps them out, with success.

Steve Koren who penned the entertaining Jim Carrey and Jennifer Aniston 2001 effort, Bruce Almighty, sadly also gave us comic duds in Jack & Jill and A Thousand Words with Eddie Murphy. Along with Lorne Michaels who did it exceedingly better in Wayne's World and Clueless creator, Amy Heckling, this comedy movie borders on being humourless.

Whereas the foolproof Mike Myers & Dana Carvey- led Wayne's World succeeded through funny, witty writing and slapstick and jokes and thus it avoided being a TV to film -based flick, A Night At The Roxbury prattles on and on far beyond breaking point, without engaging and really stamping its duty that its botched execution renders it as a tedious and unmemorable caper. Will Ferrell and Chris Kattan share chemistry onscreen, but the jokes that they delivered failed to tickle my funny bone, incessantly. I think the fact that it was originally an SNL piece wherein their characters never spoke or uttered a single word of dialogue for 5 mins, here Chris and Will's characters are given lines to work with. It's unfortunate though that most of it just wasn't funny enough.

This was a truly utter disappointment; I so wanted to enjoy this one and the inclusion of euro dance songs such as Haddaway's What Is Love? was something I liked (which gets played a great deal throughout the film, which will make some people hate the song), although I do wish that the huge euro dance hit, The Real Mccoy's Another Night of 1994 was featured too.

The soundtrack is cool and being a fan of 1990s euro dance music is definitely worth checking out for lovers of this genre - yet sadly, however, this film isn't.

Final Verdict:

This night at the Roxbury was, by all means, forgettable and there was almost nothing that was close to being a laugh riot. This is strictly for die-hard Will Ferrell fans and fans of SNL's Roxbury guys, who unlike the rest of us, will manage to get much amusement out of this surprisingly flawed buddy comedy.


Saturday, 12 January 2019

Retro Review: Good Burger (1997)

Good Burger
Cast: Kenan Thompson, Kel Mitchell, Abe Vigoda, Sinbad, Shar Jackson, Linda Cardellini, Carmen Electra, Marques Houston
Genre: Comedy
U.S Box Office Gross: over $23 million

Plot: Two dim-witted teenagers are forced to save their fast food chain from closing, despite a new & improved burger joint that wants to be ''top dog'' of the fast food industry

'Hold The Pickles On This One'

When this film was screened to a selection of 15 film critics in the U.S back in 1997, nine of them walked out.

Good Burger is based on a sketch from a kids TV series, All That and with the success of Kenan and Kel making waves with the kids, Nickelodeon Movies took another gamble on the comic duo with direction by Brian Robbins (Old Dogs). Good Burger has a good helping of burgers, fries and fast food, yet unfortunately, it lacks any wit and the film's tone and humour will go over most people's heads, but for avid fans of Kenan and Kel.

Two so-called not very bright teens, Dexter and Ed try to save their fast food joint from going out of business with a rival competitor in Mondo Burger opening across the street trying to scupper their plans.

It doesn't have the witty banter or satirical commentary on fast food rivalry of Hong Kong comedy, Chicken and Duck Talk, nor is the story as engaging. But Good Burger is unfortunately uninspiring by taking the theme of fast food, and yet not doing something remotely outrageous, witty or adventurous with it, - and I'd admit I struggled to enjoy it immensely, with the jokes becoming repetitive and the humour's consistency overall, is so poor and not very entertaining, it just wasn't well written. It mainly consists of Kel's Ed (looking like a male Whoopi Goldberg with the dreadlocks) shouting,''Welcome to Good Burger!!, Home of the Good Burger'', which gets tired after say 3 or 4 times, and sounding like a stereotypical surfer dude or an extra on Beavis and Butthead

The dance scene in a mental hospital bumps this up to an extra half a mark, but the film's insistence on taking what was initially a TV sketch and stretching it out exhaustively for a feature film and not include additional and better slapstick and jokes is a mistake. I smiled once, twice (one scene being Ed, in a slo-mo scene, tries to stop a woman eating a good burger that is laced with some poisonous substance, and tackles her to the ground) but other than that, unlike most so-bad-it's good films or comedy films that I have enjoyed that critics have loathed, there wasn't one aspect that made me want to love it. Kel's schtick would have been fine - if it wasn't as grating as it became and I wanted this to work and to enjoy it, but the longer the story continued with no big surprises to speak of, meant I lost my enthusiasm towards it. I did watch Kenan and Kel as a teenager back in the 1990s - and Kel's love for orange soda, but whereas my younger brother at the time loved it, I was pretty much the opposite.

Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell do what they can with the material they are given; however, with that material, it fails to challenge their characters, as well as performers and there is arguably no genuine humour that develops between them. The remaining characters seem throwaway and don't really make an impact on the main plot or the story. With a runtime of 1 hr and 35 mins and with very little jokes and laugh-out-laugh comedy, it appears the producers and writers didn't make good use of these mins.

It really helps a great deal by being a fan of Kenan and Kel and familiarising yourself with their brand of humour and comedy and with that in mind, it understands its teen audience and aims squarely at them, because otherwise, Good Burger isn't going to sustain one's interest throughout. Having said all that, despite being a kids/teens movie, it could have tried a little harder to garner universal appeal too, with a more daring screenplay and to be more entertaining.

Final Verdict:

Teenagers will end up enjoying this one a whole lot more and whilst it is not wholly unlikeable in my eyes, it fell short in so many areas.

Unfortunately, this burger just doesn't cut the mustard.


Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Retro Review: Celtic Pride (1996)

Celtic Pride
Cast: Daniel Stern, Dan Ackroyd, Damon Wayans, Gail O' Grady, Christopher McDonald 
Genre: Comedy
U.S Box Office Gross: over $9 million

Plot: Two overly loyal Celtic fans kidnap their opponent's star player in order to guarantee their team the championship

'Sports Caper That Bounces Its Way Off The Court'

One of Judd Apatow's earlier efforts and alongside Fun With Dick & Jane, Celtic Pride is another earlier offering of his, before he achieved (brief) success with Juno and Knocked Up.

Two die-hard Boston Celtics fans attend the NBA championship winning game against Utah Jazz, with Mike having one thing on his mind: the Celtics becoming victorious. He and Jimmy get one of the Jazz's players drunk and the next day, they kidnap their star player, Lewis Scott.

Christopher McDonald (Flubber) plays the Utah Jazz's coach and there is also a cameo by former player, Larry Bird.

The two leads Daniel Stern and Dan Ackroyd were better off in Home Alone and Ghostbusters, but their characters in this movie are both one-dimensional, utterly charmless and unlikeable and they were completely miscast. Mike and Jimmy show virtually little in the way of character development and not once throughout did I get the impression these were people I wanted to root for. Along with Apatow's unfunny writing, director Tom DeCherchio seems lost as to where to take this movie and by not infusing it with slapstick scenes and funny one-liners, Celtic Pride, much like a losing NBA team, keeps on aiming but never finding the ball in the net.

When it goes down the kidnapping route and aims to go for the cynical approach, the film takes a U-turn for the worse and along with that, the laughs dry up. Clearly intended as a spoof film on sports, athletes and fandom, it fails to emphasise and parody on either of these aspects. But besides the humour, there was nothing else left to watch for; with the basketball action scenes being pitifully few.

A movie about fandom and in the context of sports that takes a look at the lengths devoted fans go to show their loyalty to their team, it lacks any sharpness, genuine farce and a movie that deserves a better casting than what has been served up. It's a coincidence as a comedy film Celtic Pride has little of that thing - pride.

Final Verdict:

As '90s comedies go, this is one of the worst I've watched and one of the least amusing and as basketball movies go, this wasn't as entertaining and enjoyable as I found it to be.

With better leads compared to Daniel Stern, Dan Ackroyd and Damon Wayans and a funnier, wittier and far more charming script, Celtic Pride would flourish more. An interesting premise goes nowhere and with a darkish, unbalanced tone, in addition to being devoid of laughs, this is all hot air and very little substance.

Apatow may be an accomplished director in some ways, but here, it just seems he hasn't had a clue how to go about the idea and premise, with an approach that is just not suitably fitting for a mainstream-based comedy.


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