This was just terrible and a shame to the Blacklist name. I don't know why they made this. I kept wondering if the actors knew it was terrible while they filmed. This show did not tick off any positive element of episodic or continuous plot. All of it was incoherent. There was no urgency, no character development. The characters were one dimensional. The stories half-developed. Save yourself these hours.
I knew that I did not like this movie from way back when it first came out. I can't remember if I saw it in the movies or on VCR tape. Remember those? Seemed like it took years for them to be released so they could show it on HBO, maybe Showtime. Or just poor marketing decisions that media companies seem to make. Anywhoo, I just remembered that I didn't like it. I decided to give it another try thinking maybe I would get it in a different way with all the wisdom that comes with age. Nope.
This movie was actually much, much worse than I remembered. I have doubts that I even was able to get very far into this movie - or that I was even remembering the same movie. I mean, I could not have forgotten the absolute decimation of my teen-hood with the very long and terrible gang rape of Molly Ringwald in the back of Andrew McCarthy's car. But then maybe she wasn't? I dunno. At least it wasn't by Andrew McCarthy's terribly boring character.
Did the audience really deserve that in addition to the lackluster characters, flat cinematography, socio-economic stereotypes, and 80's hair and clothes? Oh, and let's not forget the overly long and dull opening with the terrible music.
But the movie doesn't leave us hanging, there's also an ending that was clearly written for a completely different movie as it's the only scene in which Molly and Andrew's characters have chemistry. If I were editing, that's the only scene I'd say. Along with a few clips of young Ben Stiller and Viggo Mortenson - because, wow....
Every episode pulled out another scifi trope and has it handled by a bunch of overaged high school kids. For that matter, it also contained dialogue and situations rejected by daytime soap operas, and those are mostly extinct. They also threw in social media somehow. Most of the characters were acting in a completely different show than the leads. And the story never made any sense, nor did the "science." Scifi should at least aspirational and creative, not pathetically stupid. To top it off, it just ends and I have no idea what happened. I can't decide if I want Netflix to bring it back for another series to get to the point or if it I can just bleach it out of my brain. It makes a good background when you're doing something that requires your concentration.
I'm a big fan of the Liam Neeson kick some ass action. The formula works for me, despite his age. The Commuter, not so much.
Both the action and plot were disappointing. The beginning montage was too long and fill and could easily have been shortened to edit out unnecessary scenes and the length of the movie. Or add some coherence to the plot.
It could have been a good psychological thriller, but never took it beyond a few scenes. He barely strained his conscience.
Then it tried to be an action movie, but wasn't coherent or fulfilling as that. His mission on the train was him roaming back and forth in a panic and trying to call for help. A more intelligent selection process would have made up for a lot of the silly physicality of the stunts.
There were some red herrings, but nothing really interesting.
Then, other than a train crash, there's absolutely no explanation of the villians. They are omnipotent, except for the main plot point. We never know who they are. And the last scene... Just skipped ahead without any backstory.
A lot of wasted potential. There are struggling writers who could have done better.
I love holiday romance movies. This one was a disappointment. It was so formulaic that I called out the next action before it happened. The actors were interesting and the boys are pretty. The scenery was gorgeous. The music was the typical holiday romance music, but rather than enhancing the romance, it seemed to try and replace what was missing in the story and rather distracting.
A tighter script with fewer distracting side stories and better editing could have made this one I'd want to watch every year. Also, better character development would have been helpful for the lead and the anti-hero guy who was nothing more than an annoying plot point (despite the pretty).
Wasn't very excited to see this movie for a variety of reasons. Not that I didn't want to see this small, yet popular Bible story come to life; and it wasn't the casting of Russell Crowe who despite his off-screen antics always does a good job. I think it was the director and the seemingly long-time that it took to bring to screen that had me hesitant. Turns out I was right to be leery. It was entertaining, but ultimately a real let down. A lot of wasted potential. I'm sure someone will do it better.
How was it entertaining? I alternately laughed, was moved to tears, covered my ears and closed my eyes in horror, and was writing Kosher jokes in my head (really, with a kid named Ham who wasn't, um, quite Kosher they really wrote themselves).
The acting was solid, but the haphazard script and the poorly used visual effects watered down the story (wasn't meant as a pun, but again, the jokes just write themselves for this movie).
Then there was the fact that the movie didn't know what it was supposed to be - spiritual teaching, PETA cautionary tale, action movie, battle movie, Neverending Story + Galaxy Quest (hello rock monsters) Harry Potter (nothing to do with Emma Watson) or a drama? Most of the time I felt it was a comedy. That's what made it a mess.
SPOILER - The entire plot device of having the Cain-king hide on the ship for 9 months with the support of the son and no one noticing was ridiculous. And, really, there was hardly any point. If there was one, it was handled very ham-handed (see, writes themselves).
There were a lot of visual effects, but they were not really put to good use. I could have done with a lot less bird butts.
It also would be been nice to see some subtle details showing that these were ancient Jews - like a prayer over drink or food, or something.
Not sorry I saw this movie - it was entertaining, just glad I had discount tickets.
I Want My Money Back. I Want Those 2+ Hours Back, Too
This movie brings to mind the South Park episode, "The Passion of the Jew" where the kids go to Hollywood to demand their money back from a deranged (portentously) Mel Gibson. This is what I want to do to Ridley Scott.
Even more than demanding my money back, I want to smack him. Then send him to go live with George Lucas who did the same damage to his Star Wars legacy with substandard prequels.
The first two Aliens movies were great. Scary. Fun.
I wouldn't be surprised to find out that he entered a bunch of information into a writing software program that generated this horrible script.
All of the characters were one-dimensional, except for the robot. ALL of the characters did not act consistently from scene-to-scene. None of them acted like the professions they were supposed to me.
For example, in 1 scene we discover that the punk white trash dude is a geologist, yet he and biologist have no interest in exploring the alien planet, the rock structure, and the alien corpses. Instead of being interested in what they traveled 2+ years to find, they walk away scared of the dead alien. Then, the geologist who is in charge of mapping gets them lost and for some reason they never contacted anyone to tell them and get help - until it was too late. Then, they find an unidentified substance where there was none previously and decide to touch it and find a LIVING alien snake to be "beautiful." Seriously.
Then the Christian(?) archaeologist is suddenly a genetic scientist who can identify foreign matter on the alien corpse head on sight. And her archaeologist partner and boyfriend is getting drunk for no reason. Meanwhile, she and the other woman, presumably a scientist but it was never explained, is really bad at her job, too, and do inexplicably dangerous and stupid things with their retrieved alien head.
Who the aliens were, what the biological weapon was, why their ship didn't take off, why the other aliens were killed but the biological substance's effect was dormant for thousands of years, why the alien at the beginning willingly drank the biological substance, what the biological substance was, why the substance was created, why they didn't kill the humans on Earth in the first place or give them technology, what the cave paintings really meant, and any other substantive question you can think of with respect to this mythology is never answered.
Neither is it answered why and how they convinced this fake elderly benefactor that he could be saved by going to this planet. Nor is it answered what the deal is with his daughter and why she bothered to come if she wanted to take over the company - with him traveling to another planet and on the verge of death seems like a good time for her to stay home and control the company. And why he lied about being dead and "snuck" on board is never explained.
Nor is it explained why the robot fed the boyfriend the alien substance. Nor is it explained how the woman who apparently could not get pregnant ends up pregnant from the alien infect sperm her boyfriend now apparently carries.
That's just a taste of the stupidity that runs rampant in this movie.
On top of that, there are interesting relationship tidbits and character background hinted at, but never explored. Nothing of any substance is developed in this movie - not space travel, not the mythology, not the characters, not the plot.
The dialogue is almost without exception annoying and pointless. Which sums up this movie. Annoying and pointless. I want my money back.
The first 10 minutes were intriguing and it went downhill from there.
The characters were shallow and poorly drawn. There was no attempt given to create a connection with the characters and I could barely remember their names. Some side characters just appeared without explanation - but so did the main characters.
The dialogue was trite and stilted. Lame was the consensus in the room.
The plot was weak and piecemeal. Rather than being intriguing by doling out facts, it felt completely weak and slapped together during editing.
None of us were invested - except with the movie finally ending.
Best of the Bunch, so far. (referring to the 4 Nora Roberts' adaptations Lifetime television is showing January to February 2007).
The chick got issues and I sat there wondering how the next person was going to die. All in all, that made for a good story. Even better, there was a great cast and a tightly crafted screenplay that moved along.
Even in the face of a big character/story flaw, I was able to enjoy the film. I can't remember it from the book, but the literary device they used to show us what happened in the past was effective as a literary device, but it also created a situation that was more than just trauma, it was full-blown PTSD and I don't think that she should have be allowed to go into fires after her performance on the test. It not only puts her life in danger, but puts the lives of her colleagues and the people they save in danger. This fact, however, didn't distract me too much from enjoying the movie.
I gotta say I was totally hooked by the guy who kept spotting her. He was cute and the entire thing was so romantic. I was hoping he wasn't going to die by fire or be a firebug himself. I love those tricks of fate.
Now, that FBI agent, he seemed like something out of the ABC Soap General Hospital - a cop who's portrayed as a bad guy. Thankfully, it was one short scene and things moved along (proving it was definitely not an ABC Daytime product).
Was it just me, or did the bad guy look like a bald Ben Affleck to anyone else? The rest, I really enjoyed. I'll be watching this film again. The only thing missing was something - a theme, an event, a person - that I could emotionally connect with. It was a good mystery. I give this film 8 out of 10 stars.
Charlotte Ross and John Corbett saved this movie. So did the character Nate the Sheriff. This movie was more enjoyable than Angels Falls (the first Nora Roberts movie by Lifetime) - it's overall a better story, a better executed adaptation and has better casting. I might even watch this again for the fun of it. Especially for Charlotte Ross's saucy part.
What was off with this movie was the casting of one of the main characters and the need to adapt a longer, more involved story with so many characters to fit a two hour movie. This should have been a two-part serial, at least, to do it all justice. Still, not a bad job for a TV movie.
Lily was just horrid. They actually could have and should have left her character and storyline out completely. It would have enabled a better adaptation of the rest of the story. Her character was bland - the acting without depth - and the storyline rushed and silly so she never had a chance to portray anything else (I might be being too charitable). There was even a plot hole at the beginning - how did the ex happen to end up being a mechanic in Montana just where she ended up? Well, the story would have been just fine without Lily or the half-brother and that entire storyline. The removal of 1 sister from the plot wouldn't have been so criminal in light of the short-shrift keeping it in did to the rest of the movie. If not cut her out entirely, keep her only as an occasional catalyst for the two interesting sisters and cut out the separate storyline.
The other sister, Willa, was okay. The little Williams sister was good, she just didn't evoke a lot of sympathy with her one-note portrayal. Some of that could be put down to the adaptation - we only knew about her loss and suffering from other characters talking about it, she never looked like she was having a struggle. Her work with John Corbett made her the most interesting she could be. So did her work with CR. It doesn't hurt that she's cute.
JC didn't seem cowboy to me - actually, he seemed more cowboy at Aidan on SITC.
The scenery, lighting, sets and costume were all well done, unlike in Angels Falls. This time around the lovely hair and make up didn't detract from the story, the women are all lovely enough to carry it off without being distracting (as in the waitress in AF).
I just watched Angels Falls this weekend. I thought it was a terrible movie - watchable but just not good. I'm sure the book was way better as NR is a fantastic writer, but I did not really get drawn into sympathy with Heather Locklear's character. I think some of that was her performance. I can't criticize it technically. She obviously followed the script and her direction, but there was a depth of feeling missing. I knew she was traumatized because she turned her head a lot and I was told - over and over again - that she was, she even had some facial expressions that carefully didn't line her beautiful face, but there was no depth of emotion in her being or her eyes. Her grooming was also an issue. She always looked perfectly groomed, not like someone who had been on the run for a year in her car. I laughed out loud when the other character told her she needed a day of beauty because she looked haggard - she didn't - not even when she was sleeping in the tub!! JS, the lead actor, was also pretty good, but he too seemed stiff and mechanical in going through his part. I know he was supposed to be into the lead character, but he was not directed well enough or didn't act well enough to pull off his dual duty as a suspect and catalyst for the mystery. He was just a pretty face.
In fact, all of the characters, except for the doctor, the sheriff and the Lothario son seemed like people reciting lines rather than real to the story. Especially the young blond waitress who actually looked like an actress waiting tables trying to be noticed by a casting agent, except she's supposed to be a country girl wanting to marry a local boy and not in LA. She also didn't deliver any of her lines appropriately.
I also had issue with the lighting sometimes. It seemed too dark. The sets, also, seemed to, well, clean and pristine to be realistic. Picking tacky colors does not by itself make for authenticity. Neither does telling me that the place needs a paint job when it doesn't particularly look like it. I don't know why they kept mentioning that, it didn't enhance the later need to actually paint the walls - without telling the cops necessary evidence.
The script was another problem here. Nora Roberts is a poet. Her writing is amazing and her characters vivid and compelling. The stories are also carefully crafted. I'm sure the book itself works well as a mystery. Here, the story was obviously edited to fit the format and the running time. As a result, I felt the story was choppy and lacking in depth. Some of the things that could have been startling were too abrupt and some of the facts were shoved down our throats in an unconvincing way and didn't add anything to the story. For instance, that the blond waitress wanted the Lothario added nothing to the mystery and it's constant repetition didn't work to make me really believe or care. I only knew they wanted each other because the mother kept whinging on about it while talking about her son's sex life (ewwww, meanwhile, the actors barely bothered to keep up the pretense, and, like I said, it didn't add anything to the mystery because it was the mother who fought back, badly, against her son being a suspect and not the waitress - who could have done a good job at that since she was befriending Heather's character.
Given how wonderful Nora's writing is, this was a big disappointment.
I saw this in the movies. I think it was the one and only time in my entire life I've fallen asleep in public. But that might have been my date. Either way, this movie was terrible. Now, I've seen it again. It wasn't just age or what was going on with my life - or who I was with. This is a terrible movie. The two lead characters who are supposed to be best friends are mean to each other and do not communicate clearly. Joe, the lead "male" and writer of the movie, dresses like a girl - complete with headband and dresses and leggings. In fact, he dresses like a little girl in the 1980's. The lead woman, played by SJP, who I can never hate, is just not likable. Nor does she make sense. One second she likes Ben Stiller's pointless character, the next she's rolling her eyes at him like the rest of us. The base story is interesting and one of my favorites, I won't spoil what that is, but suffice it to say there was plenty of potential. This movie doesn't carry it off. The editing is bad - but perhaps that's mostly the fault of a shallow script and unlikeable characters. The actors can't be faulted. They do their best with virtually no material.
This script (or its editing) was saved by a combination of great acting by Randall Batinkoff (the reason I watched this film in the first place), Jenna Elfman and Bruce Davison; the good camera work; and moving music.
And by a totally surprising ending. I won't say more about that.
Jenna Elfman's character is a very sad person. A life full of tragedy and depressing mundaneness. I can't fault the rabid Scientologist's performance, I think it was technically very good in a moment by moment measure. Appropriate tears, thoughtful movements, the whole nine yards. But I never felt that the character was doing anything more than delivering lines and emotions - which, again, she did very well. There was no cohesiveness to the character or her back story. One moment apathetic and depressed, one moment suffering while painting a wall she never finishes (yawn and took too much time from story development - someone thought they were making a music video) and in the next delivering a witty line that jarred you right out of the character - a line that could have been delivered without JE's famous comedic timing and in the same emotional state that the character had the rest of the movie. There were also things the character did that did not seem consistent with the scene before - I'm not sure if that was editing or writing - I suspect both. There were many scenes and moments where JE had no lines, which saved the character from being totally annoying. There were also a few other stories that the character tied together, but again not cohesively (did that guy survive the heart transplant? What was the point of the brother?) Ultimately, the character was the movie's linchpin and she served in that capacity well.
Randall Batinkoff's performance was excellent, but he was not in this story enough. That was because his tragedy was meant to highlight something about JE's character. I can see that his acting has gotten even better than it ever was - and he's just as attractive as ever. I really hope to see him in more meaty roles in the future.
Bruce Davison, also given short shrift in appearances, did very well with what he had. The parallels of the loss of his character and Randall's was something I really appreciated.
I love Samantha Mathis. Love her in everything she does. I'm just not too sure why she was in this movie. I enjoyed seeing her, but again her character was more of a prop for JE than anything. I kept wanting more from her.
This is a well done Lifetime movie. Better quality and different mood than most. A good couple of hours on a weekend.
I've read a ton of books that use this same set up and all have executed on it 100% better than this movie. It was terrible. A bunch of good actors, nice wardrobe and beautiful sets...and it totally disappointed. I found myself yelling and throwing things at the TV. I kept hoping it would get better. It just got worse. There was no character development, everything was rushed. This was the perfect example of bad storytelling. It did everything every writing book tells you to not do. Or rather, misses everything you are supposed to do. It was a big sham on the viewer. Very disappointing. A waste of film. I know there are much better scripts out there waiting to be made. How did this one get chosen?? And why? Was it some exec's kid?
Good cast, beautiful scenery, great music and good dancing could not make this an interesting movie. The inclusion of the very white and aged Patrick Swayze was jarring because he barely had a part (not to mention the fact that I try not to look too closely at him these days because of the horrid plastic surgery he's had done and the lame comments he's made to the press trying to stretch out his Dirty Dancing fame to cover his lack of follow-up success - I mean I don't need to know old ladies pinch his butt). The characters are caricatures, the script shallow and I never got sold on the lead actors romance, in fact they seemed a bit young and even more shallow than the supporting cast. I was happy to see Sela Ward and Jonathan Jackson (the real Lucky), but not enough to not multi-task while the movie was on. The dancing and music were great, but I'm not sure how the lead female character (whose name I forget and I just saw it last night) suddenly became such a great dancer all of a sudden. Aside from being pretty she did not bring any depth to the part. And the lead male was kinda good looking, but too young and not gritty enough to fit his surroundings of pre-Castro Cuba in this story. Don't consider the time lost, but it's just a diversion while doing other things kinda of film.
I don't think I've ever been so irritated by a movie before
I don't know why I didn't turn it off. I didn't have to pay for it. I kept waiting for it to get better. Good. Interesting. Funny. Something. Another case of where all the good parts were in the trailer. I like Will Smith. I want to like his movies. This one was uneven and tried too hard.
Parts of it were funny. Other parts were stupid. Other parts were sappy, but without depth. The acting was fine, the cast was fine. The production values were fine. I love NYC, it can't ever go wrong for a setting (in fact, it always makes me want to move back home). But even NYC couldn't make up for the bad script.
Blech. I'm irritated and it's not even over. Please end soon. Please. It's like a car crash, I can't stop watching.
I rented this from Netflix (luckily) because I wanted to see Janet Gunn in something other than Silk Stalkings. This movie did not do her any favors in my ability to critique her acting ability in movies.
10 painful minutes in and I couldn't take it anymore. It's still on right now as I write this painful review. Really lame dialogue is going on while flying from (?) a fire site. Why is she whining about her daughter back in LA ("that crazy town", according to the apparently hick No. CA. pilot, like it's so far away) while battling a strange fire? My limit was reached when I saw the lame fireman didn't know to stop, drop and roll while his leg was mysteriously on fire through his fire proof suit.
The beginning had nothing to do with the middle or the end.
The plots didn't tie together and there was nothing to hold my interest - except for Richard Dean Anderson who I've been a fan of since his General Hospital days. Unfortunately, I cannot fathom why he made this movie, unless he thought Justine Bateman's name (then) would do something for his career.
Justine was wooden and I could never come to care for her. Perhaps if she hadn't destroyed evidence in the police station (which was a function of poor direction, actually) and was upset about seeing a man shot for more than 10 minutes...I might have bought her. Then with each tale of terror and abuse...I actually didn't care.
The "twist" at the end was a stupid sell out. And made no sense from whence this movie came.
Extremely slow. Boring. Dull. It's on as I write this and I can't stand to keep my attention on it. I've paused it to reorganize files on my computer in the other room. I've been surfing the Net and posting on a message board. I've been writing a story.
The lead character is the male lead, not Dunst. He is boring and self-pitying. I don't even want Peter to win because he's too much of a whiner. Unfortunately, it is his self-pitying drone that narrates a too large portion of this film. Narration is considered the tool of the bad script and it lives up to that expectation in this film. Not enough showing and too much telling.
Dunst's character is not someone I enjoy very much - which goes to show what good actress she is, because I usually adore her charisma.
The ancillary characters of Peter's family are annoying and pointless. They just distract from the painfully slow story. Even Jon F. who I usually love is annoying and out of place. I liked Peter's practice partner better than Peter, but he did not have enough screen time. He would have been a better male lead.
If this movie had heart it might fall in line with all of those other underdog sports movies (Cutting Edge, Rocky, Dodgeball (it was better than this!), etc.). But it had no heart. The characters were caricatures. Stiff acting. Meandering direction. Disjointed scenes. The lighting seemed off. Hazy plot. A waste of a cast. Don't bother.
The views of London were the best part of the film, fortunately I LOVE London.
I gave the movie an 8 because I mostly enjoyed it.
That's not to say that I couldn't deconstruct the poorly concocted and unculled plots, the poor editing and the unlikeable characters. Or that I didn't FF a few places, surf the Net and take a lot of breaks. It's just that I expected an annoying Brittany Murphy "romantic comedy" and got a poorly disguised sitcom instead. And while I hate sitcoms, it suited my desire for a mildly entertaining film I'd never seen before and that didn't challenge my mind too much.
Ron Livinston was completely wasted - I've adored him in everything I've ever seen him in before this. Not only was he wasted, he was a reprehensible character. Other reviewers have already harped on how terrible Stacy (Brittany) and the other characters were. I just want to make sure everyone realizes what a creep this guy was - which softened the dislike I otherwise had for Stacy's actions. I would NEVER put up with a guy who was lying to me like he was to her. I would have dumped him long before I took all of the actions this character did (not that I would ever do that, but you know what I mean).
It was a diversion for people who enjoy movies, like I do.
It should have been a really cute movie. It had all of the elements - good actors, good acting, good directing, great soundtrack (not that is was trendy, but that it really set the mood well), good production value, good costuming, good make-up, good pacing...but it was missing a key element - a convincing script. This movie is virtually the same premise as the Jenifer Aniston/Kevin Bacon vehicle Picture Perfect - girl feels she has to pretend to be married in order to get a promotion/keep her job as that will make her look stable (unfortunately, a rather accurate business prejudice); she hires an actor to take the part, borrows a coworker's house and daughter (who though she works for the same newly acquired company apparently does not have the same concerns?!) and fakes it. Unlike in PP, though, there is no awareness of the long-term consequences. How do you work (especially as an executive) for a company and fake having a family, what about the office party and other events? What if she begins dating someone? Then, without an convincing writing or thematic transition, the actor falls for the girl played by Tori Spelling and makes things more difficult, and annoying, than ever. What this movie turns out to be is a really long sitcom. You know it's a bad idea to lie from the beginning and without any logic or planning it just comes across as stupid. Not even the good acting was able to save to day. It was nice to see Kate Vernon.
Like another poster I only watched this because I'm a Queer as Folk fan and wanted to see Bobby Gant in something else. Also like the other reader I couldn't help thinking of Hal Sparks/Michael Novotny at certain points. Unlike the other reviewer, I luckily ordered this from Netflix and saved a few bucks...I also ff'd most of it, and didn't lose a single plot point. The movie was stilted and lame. The acting was bad. Sorry, Bobby...what could you do with that script?? Also unlike the other reviewer, I'd say if it's on late night, watch an infomercial. Or read a book! The rest of this review is written only to fill the required minimum IMDb length...there is nothing else to say about this not-quite-a-porn.
Which means when I got to a museum and see a blotch on the wall I don't pretend it's art and say a bunch of meaningless, pseudo-intellectual prattle. By the same token, I don't have to pretend that a film lacking in continuity, a plot, good camera work and interesting characters is anything but an annoying and pretentious waste of time.
Gale, as always, is compelling to watch and draws you in....but he his work is wasted in this piece of tripe. Gale - read the script first and look for a good story.
At this point, I need a shower...and can someone smack that annoying and self-absorbed main character?
Most of the other reviewers have said it all, I just want to make sure that there are enough comments on here to warn you away from wasting your time with this movie. You won't get the time back! The story is derivative, predictable and silly. The acting is totally flat - which only Val can get away with as he has a head injury, but it does nothing to hold my interest. The direction and screenplay are trying too hard to be arty in the manner that a lot of independent film makers seem to do these days in order to differentiate themselves from "Hollywood", but which only results in giving me a headache. I feel insulted by this technique of skipping around and not providing any interesting dialogue or time sequence. The camera work is good quality, though I don't agree with all of the shots. The characters are unbelievable and you just can't relate to them as real people. The Barbie I played with as a kid had more character and animation. As a side note, Neve's hair is distracting - I can't figure out if it's a bad wig or just a bad idea. 5 of 10...being generous because Val is a hottie.
This is the first movie I ever saw based on a book where the movie was better (Bridget Jones is another). In this case, much better. Goldsmith's book was bitter and, like her other books, extremely insulting to men. While the men in the movie aren't the most admirable and there are a bevy of them all in one place (so to speak), I was able to take it as an entertaining metaphor rather than a completely emasculating experience. Also, one couldn't be totally surprised that these friends all ended up where they did. The worst part of the movie was Goldie Hawn's over-plumped lips. The best was the sparring between Sarah Jessica Parker and Bette Midler. Oh, and the revenge. Who hasn't wanted that against ex at some point in the grieving process?!