Film Reviews


By • Feb 4th, 2005 •

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Universal Pictures and Gold Circle Films / 26 Films Prods
MPAA rating: PG-13 / Running time — 88 minutes

QUOTE: Trite, but: Dermot Mulroney, I took an exit poll. You are definitely worth the extra three hundred.

It’s been a busy weekend here in Las Vegas: The opening of “Forever Plaid” at the Gold Coast Casino was filled with the usual celebrities, including Tony Curtis and magician Lance Burton. Why not entertain in Hell was my opinion of the back-from-the-dead singing group. The highlight of the weekend was Gerard Alessandrini’s “Forbidden Vegas” at The Westin Casuarina Hotel & Spa. I don’t know what “Forbidden Broadway” and “Forbidden Hollywood” were like, but “Forbidden Vegas” is a sensational, funny and mean, evening. I loved the spoof on the Las Vegas Strip behemoth Cirque du Soleil (“O”, “Zumanity,” “Mystere” and “Ka”). Sarah Brightman, Cher, and Celine Dion – only 3-day tourists love you! I’m going back to “Forbidden Vegas” and all my friends want to join me.

Why can’t beautiful Kat (Debra Messing), a highly efficient New York airline employee, get a date? How come she has absolutely no male friends? How come she does not know – in New York City? – even one male gay friend she can cajole to join her on an all-expenses-paid weekend to a fabulous wedding in London?

Kat does not have a good relationship with her self-centered mother Bunny (Holland Taylor). She barely speaks to her half-sister Amy (Amy Adams). And her step-father Victor (Peter Egan), supposedly the only one she likes, is also not only physically absent in her life, he is emotionally distant. You see, Kat has to lie to everyone. She cannot admit she is lonely, unhappy, and dateless. So she hires an expensive gigolo to accompany her to London as her devoted new boyfriend. For $6,000, from her 401(k), she hires gorgeous Nick (Dermot Mulroney). He immediately tells her the $6,000 fee does not include sex, which is extra. Kat should have asked for the menu with prices listed.

Kat is lying to everyone because her flighty sister is marrying Edward Fletcher-Wooten (Jack Davenport) and his Best Man is her ex-fiancé, Jeffrey (Jeremy Sheffield). Like me, are you surprised how insensitive Bunny, Victor, Nick, Amy and Jeffrey are regarding Kat’s broken heart? Jeffrey spent seven years stringing Kat along, then dumped her.

As soon as Kat and Nick hit London, Bunny puts them in the same bedroom and Kat takes a look at what $6,000 buys. Later, Kat peruses Nick’s sex menu and gives her order. Now Kat is in debt. The romantic twists come as a cute surprise but fail to engage in the manner of MY BEST FRIEND’S WEDDING.

Based on the novel “Asking for Trouble” by Elizabeth Young, this movie begs the question: “Could the book have had so little substance, or do we blame Dana Fox’s script? However weak the script is, the director, Clare Kilner, certainly knows how to bring out the best in Mulroney and showcase his sexual charisma. We need more female directors who can heighten a male star’s appeal for women in the audience. Messing is pleasing and her pairing with Mulroney is inspired. Yet Nick’s character is under-developed. Why did Nick become an escort and why would he suddenly abandon such a lucrative profession for crisis-ridden, insecure Kat?

Kat Ellis: Debra Messing
Nick Mercer: Dermot Mulroney
Amy: Amy Adams
Edward Fletcher-Wooten: Jack Davenport
TJ: Sarah Parish
Jeffrey: Jeremy Sheffield
Victor: Peter Egan
Bunny: Holland Taylor

Director: Clare Kilner
Screenwriter: Dana Fox
Based on the book “Asking for Trouble” by: Elizabeth Young
Producers: Nathalie Marciano, Michelle Chydzik Sowa, Jessica Bendinger, Paul Brooks
Executive producers: Norm Waitt, Scott Niemeyer, Steve Robbins, Jim Reeve
Director of photography: Oliver Curtis
Production designer: Tom Burton
Music: Blake Neely
Co-producer: Jeff Levine
Costume designer: Louise Page
Editor: Mary Finlay

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One Response »

  1. This is the first review of this movie that I have read, that I agreed with

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