Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Movies: The Proposal

The Proposal: another embarrassing excuse for a film, so fraught with clichés that, in verbally summarizing the plot to a friend (which only required three or so sentences), he was able to preemptively identify each plot development. Of course, one knows, within the first few minutes of the film, when dragon-lady Sandra Bullock takes her Starbucks from her sweaty and apologetic male assistant, we know that, as little respect as these people have for each other, they will be in love and married by the end of the film. The deux ex machina that gets us there is the small fact that hotshot editor Bullock is Canadian, and so self-important that she never bothered to file the appropriate immigration papers. In order to avoid deportation, she blackmails her assistant, who will do anything to become an editor himself, into joining her in sham matrimony. But after a weekend with his family in small-town Alaska, condensed into 90 minutes worth of hijinks including a Hispanic male stripper, a bird of prey that steals Bulluck’s blackberry, and a native-American fire-ceremony turned booty-shaking extravaganza (offending two whole cultures in only one whole scene—brilliant!), the two have actually fallen in love (not before she runs from the altar, though, leaving him alone and ashamed). Why does Hollywood make these movies, and why do airplanes play them, when we are trapped with little choice but to watch and shudder?

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