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Belated review quick takes

CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN 2

Crap crap crappity crap crap crap. Look, there’s room for reasonable disagreement when it comes to opinions of films, but if you go to this movie and find any decent laugh in there whatsoever, you should know right now that I have nothing but utter contempt for you. If you even go into the theater expecting something good, my estimation of your intelligence is not going to be high.

Apparently determined to make us forget that he was ever funny, Steve Martin reprises his role as father-of-12 Tom Baker (Baker’s dozen, get it?), this time engaging in a petty rivalry with father-of-eight Eugene Levy, who has made me forget that he was ever funny. The plot’s taken straight from the John Candy vehicle Summer Rental, which was fun but never a classic. This groaner is no fun at all, but the presence of Hilary Duff on the poster probably gave you some indication of that.

Now, to be fair: I have not seen the first Cheaper by the Dozen nor the 1950 original, nor read the book that both were loosely based on. Perhaps if I had, I would have gained a greater appreciation for the depth of character on display here. But you know what? I doubt it very much. When perennial attention-whore Carmen Electra (as Levy’s wife … he wishes) is the most compelling thing onscreen, you know you’d have been better off buying a copy of Maxim.

[NOTE-- Matt King's post-screening review was more succinct: "It sucks ass cock."]

THE BROTHERS GRIMM on DVD

It’s not news when Terry Gilliam films fail at the box office, but it’s rare that they fail with critics too. In a wry commentary track here, Gilliam admits that he hated the script, but was broke, and he hints at the pain involved in working with Miramax. The Weinsteins forced Gilliam to fire Samantha Morton in favor of Lena Headey — a fact he brushes over by ignominiously referring to Morton as Headey’s stand-in. Among the extras, there’s a deleted scene that includes an elaborate fight with a living tree and a featurette on the special effects. Like all Gilliam films, Brothers Grimm is never less than interesting; it’s just less than inspired.

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