Music and Lyrics

"Good"

Music and Lyrics Review


It's not a complaint when I say that Hugh Grant seems to play the same role over and over these days. It never gets old to watch him play a complete bastard who is also loveable and endearing in his utter self-absorption. It may eventually get tiresome to see the spiky-haired acerbic bloke woo the girl, but it hasn't yet -- and it is certainly an improvement over his earlier, sappy-and-awkward romantic stylings.

In Music and Lyrics, Grant's playing Alex Fletcher, former frontman of a hilariously '80s band called Pop and current contented has-been. While living exclusively in the land of former glory does allow Alex to wallow in adoration without really having to do anything whatsoever, his bottom-of-the-barrel tour dates are drying up and the money is running out. He gets the chance to revive his career when a vapid pop superstar gives him four days to write her a hit song.

Alex is lucky enough to have a novice lyricist as his fill-in plant tender, so he and Sophie (Drew Barrymore) strike up an impromptu partnership to crank out a twee pop ballad in under a week. It's a convenient set up for the odd couple brand of foreplay so popular in chick flicks, with the flirty banter and clever quipping, but most of the entertainment isn't from the awkwardness of first love so much as it is about Barrymore's floopy, hippie appeal colliding with Grant's sarcastic charm.

There is something about Music and Lyrics that seems rote, even for a prototype in the romantic comedy field. It hits all the appropriate rises and falls of a burgeoning onscreen romance -- the meet cute, the sudden discovery of deep feelings, the obstacles that threaten to tear the lovers apart -- and it hits them precisely when convention dictates. But it does so even though Barrymore and Grant have a more bickering sibling or flirtatious friends vibe than they do, even though their romance has no real roadblocks to it, even though it feels like these things happen because they are supposed to happen in romantic comedies.

But Music and Lyrics is much more comedy than romance. It's funny because of Alex's unflagging wittiness, and the tragically accurate satire of a rich pop star's enthusiasm for both Hunduism and onstage dry humping he calls "dancing." Kristin Johnston is also a delight as Sophie's sister, a weight-loss guru with a huge residual crush on Alex's patented Pop dance moves. It's accidentally funny because of the bargain basement dubbing in of singing voices for all the actors (which has happened to Barrymore before, in Everyone Says I Love You). But the absolute top tier of comedy is the opening scene of Pop's original 1984 hit, "Pop Goes My Heart," which is spectacularly Wham-tastic.

It's too bad that Music and Lyrics isn't better, because it's been ages since there was a really good romantic comedy, and this one looks adorable on paper. But writer-director Marc Lawrence, who previously did Two Weeks Notice, may know how to write Hugh Grant to be flawlessly endearing, but he does not seem to have the same knack for pacing an entire romance. It's got all the polish and pizzazz of an entertaining movie, but it really feels too chicky for a good comedy, yet not romantic enough for the Valentine's release it's set up to be.

Are there any rapping grannies in the house?



Music and Lyrics

Facts and Figures

Run time: 96 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 14th February 2007

Box Office USA: $50.5M

Box Office Worldwide: $145.9M

Budget: $40M

Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures

Production compaines: Castle Rock Entertainment, Village Roadshow Pictures, Reserve Room, Flower Films (II)

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 62%
Fresh: 104 Rotten: 63

IMDB: 6.5 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer:

Starring: as Sophie Fisher, as Alex Fletcher, as Colin Thompson, as Chris Riley, as Cora Corman, Nick Bacon as Pop Bass Player, Andrew Wyatt as Pop Guitar Player, Dan McMillan as Pop Drummer, Tom Foligno as Has-Beens Promo Announcer (voice), as David Newbert, Brooke Tansley as Janice Stern, Daniel Stewart Sherman as Willy, as Khan, as Ray, as Greg Antonsky, Jeremy Karson as Charlie, Emma Lesser as Lucy, as Rhonda, Adam Grupper as Gary, Charlotte Maier as Barbara, as Tricia, Lanette Ware as Mia, as Sloan Cates, as Derek, Kathleen McNenny as Gloria, Stevie Ray Dallimore as Maitre d', Spenser Leigh as Beth Riley, Lou Torres as Security Guard

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links


Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

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.