Bewitched

"Weak"

Bewitched Review


Campy-revamp remakes and Nicole Kidman just don't mix.

But the problem is not the actress's performances. Sheadded bite and ironic melodiousness to last year's slapdash, self-destructing"TheStepford Wives," and she keeps the newself-aware, big-screen version of "Bewitched" afloat with herdelightful spark of perky naivete as a witch trying to live a mortal life.She has a deftly silly sense of comedic balance and timing.

The problem is, when she's just looking to have some funbetween dramatic roles, the girl can't pick a script.

Like "The Stepford Wives," this new comedy isa mess at the screenplay level. It changes mood, direction and (like "Wives")the rules of its own reality in every other scene. The plot is sloppy andstructurally unsound. Fictional characters from the original "Bewitched"come to life in single scenes for no explored reason ("The Daily Show's"Steve Carell is bloody awful as queeny Uncle Arthur) -- and this happenseven though the bulk of the meta-cinema plot takes place in real-worldHollywood. You see, Kidman plays an actual witch who becomes an actressand gets cast as TV sorceress Samantha Stevens in a network remake of thetitular 1960s sitcom.

Will Ferrell, doing a slight variation on his stock vulnerablychildish egomaniac routine, plays a vulnerably childish egomaniac moviestar whose career is in a tailspin, so he takes the role of Darren, Samantha'sflabbergasted mortal husband, but demands that the new show be retooledto revolve around him. He's well cast, but no less obnoxious than usual.

Through a series of unlikely misunderstandings, Kidmanfalls for this superficial idiot, uses her powers to humble him, goes ona peppy-pop-song date montage, then reverses her curses because she realizesthat love must come from within...blah, blah, blah.

Writer-director Nora Ephron ("Sleepless in Seattle,""You've Got Mail") and her co-writer sister Deliaseem to view Kidman's powers as a metaphor for women who think they canfix men and break them of bad habits. But they do nothing to dispel thismyth. "Bewitched" has the same insulting message as most triteromantic comedies: Lower your standards, girls, because accepting apologiesfor preventable bad behavior is as close as you'll ever get to having agood man.

"Bewitched" has many good laughs as Kidman'snormality-seeking, endearingly wide-eyed innocent (she gets a thrill outof making microwave popcorn instead of conjuring it up with a finger snap)navigates the sycophantic- and shark-infested seas of mortal Hollywood.Michael Caine, Kristin Chenoweth (from the Broadway hit "Wicked")and Shirley Maclaine garner some laughs as Kidman's interfering father,hyperactively perky next-door neighbor and a secretly witchy diva caston the show as Endora, Samantha's interfering mother.

But the movie switches gears so many times that it severelyshorthands several character arcs. One minute Ferrell is running away fromKidman, freaked out by discovering she's a real witch. The next, he's cryinginto a pillow about how much he misses her, even though there's nothingpreventing him from driving to her house to patch things up.

Ephron was clearly more interested in forming a plot aroundpre-determined jokes than she was in finding the humor in a good story,and her out-of-whack priorities are what hex "Bewitched."



Bewitched

Facts and Figures

Run time: 102 mins

In Theaters: Friday 24th June 2005

Box Office USA: $62.3M

Box Office Worldwide: $63.3M

Budget: $80M

Distributed by: Columbia Pictures

Production compaines: Columbia Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 25%
Fresh: 46 Rotten: 139

IMDB: 4.8 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Isabel Bigelow, as Jack Wyatt, as Iris Smythson / Endora, as Nigel Bigelow, as Ritchie, as Maria Kelly, as Nina, Jim Turner as Larry, as Stu Robison, as Jim Fields, as Joey Props, Carole Shelley as Aunt Clara, as Uncle Arthur, Katie Finneran as Sheila Wyatt, as Himself, Brittany Krall as Auditioning Actress

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.