Thursday, August 28, 2008
Review: Baby Mama
I love Tina Fey and I have a crush on Amy Poehler. The two of them have such great chemistry, and teaming up for a feature length film would be awesome. So what went wrong?
Baby Mama is the story of Kate, a successful single 37 year old female who does not have a good chance at conceiving her own child, so she hires Angie, a middle class schemer to be the surrogate for her baby. The hilarity ensues from their clashing personalities. I guess.
This is a movie chock full of terrific little performances, but very few good long lasting jokes. Will Forte, Fred Armisen, Greg Kinnear, Romany Malco and Sigourney Weaver (my spell check hates all these names) all give great little performances. Each of them has a chance to shine.
But those little performances and little jokes do not add up to a funny movie. The weight of the film is carried by the shrill performances of Amy Poehler and Tina Fey who are not developed as characters in any meaningful way until the very end, in which a ludicrously unbelievable ending is tacked on, forcing Angie and Kate to "grow" as characters.
I laughed a bunch of times, but I chuckled more. I checked my watch more than the laughter or the chuckles. I was simply bored. This is 2008 and one of the big jokes was a woman with a speech impediment like the clergyman from The Princess Bride. Really?
What's interesting is that the previous week, I had seen Forgetting Sarah Marshall with my g/f, and it was an incredibly funny and emotional and honest and fun comedy movie with new and interesting things to say about relationships and people. There's even a Dracula puppet musical.
What does Baby Mama have other than Steve Martin in a ponytail?