The Hottie & the Nottie

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Posted February 7, 2008 in Film

Geeky Nate Cooper (a sincere Joel Moore) has been carrying a torch for blonde Cristabel (Paris Hilton) since first grade. (Though since he moved away at age seven, he’s technically been obsessed with a six-year-old girl—yech.) As his beloved Cris, Paris Hilton finally decides to play against type: She’s sweet, loyal, and low maintenance. And definitely, assuredly, no-really-we-swear-guys hot, asserts director Tom Putnam in a series of glossy, ponytail tossing slo-mo shots. But if Ms. Hilton is the film’s ideal woman, her second banana must be extra repulsive. Enter Christine Lakin’s monstrous June Phigg: mean, hairy, mole-y, snot-and-blood-nosed, gray fanged, unibrowed, balding, scabby, spotty, veiny-legged, infected toenailed, and vegan. And to win a date with Cris, Nate must hire someone to appreciate June’s—ehrm—charms. Heidi Ferrer’s vapid Taming of the Shrew rip-off is the closest Hilton will ever get to Shakespeare. Which is plenty far as Ferrer’s penned one of the year’s flattest and most misogynist scripts (and lately, there’s been plenty of competition). In her twelfth feature film (not that her acting shows it) Hilton is unable to rouse herself for any more emotion or sex appeal beyond tilting her head to the side and squinting her lazy eye like a schnauzer staring into the sun. And in a voice that’s alternately raspy, breathy, throaty, or babyish, Paris exhorts her friend to “Be you!” and remember that “95% of the way people see you is the way you see yourself!” Which of course means that the ugly duckling gets an industrial makeover worthy of Ty Pennington. But once Lakin can get a close-up without blinding the audience, she gets to dispense her own pearl of wisdom: “Knowing what you are means knowing what you’re not.” And Paris Hilton, you are no actress.

 


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