May 12, 2011

Overrated films part 30

Romantic comedies are a mixed bag for reasons that are kind of obvious. They're probably the most formulaic genre second only to horror. Basically you have boy meets girl, boy screws up, boy apologizes, girl forgives, wash, rinse, repeat.
Working Girl does take the formula and put it on it's ear, for better or for worse. Melanie Griffith stars as Tess, a spunky, ambitious secretary who wants to be a huge player in the world of big business. As her new boss is recovering from a skiing accident after stealing Tess' idea, Tess decides to steal it back and pretend she has her supervisor's job. She then meets Jack, a mogul in the industry and unbeknownst to Tess her boss' love interest, and attempts to solicit the idea. Romance ensues as well as a comedy of errors.
Sadly this romantic comedy has not one laugh. I can forgive a film for it, but it has to have a good love story to offset the failed attempts at humor, which it doesn't. Working Girl is as ambitious as the lead character in trying to give us lighthearted humor with a Cinderella story, but Pretty Woman this isn't. Melanie Griffith gives what is arguably her best performance in her entire career, but that doesn't save the lack of chemistry she has with Harrison Ford, or Alec Baldwin for that matter.
Critics praised this film largely on the back of Griffith's acting, and again it's a stellar performance, but the story failed to live up to that high standard. Perhaps if I were well versed with the world of high finance and brokering I may have had a few laughs, but I doubt it. Watching it recently just makes the film feel dated and awkward and the only chuckle I could give was for the strange hairstyles that were all the rage in the 80s. The film is well crafted as one would expect from Mike Nichols, but the script keeps this from being a memorable film.

"Blah comedy, but with nice performers." - Michael E. Grost

1 comment:

wigsf3 said...

Alec Baldwin's chest hair, alone, is worth the price of admission.