Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

... is really just the deleted scenes from the first three Indy movies. I can’t believe a reader of this blog said it was important to see this potboiler the first weekend because the emulsion deteriorates. Trust me, emulsion is the least of this film’s problems.

If you’re an Indiana Jones fan, better than spending two hours watching this movie, go to Disneyland, wait in line an hour and fifty-six minutes and then just take the ride.

There was something new added to the ending, however. I will give them that. But it was so utterly ridiculous that the denouement of the Hope/Crosby comedy, ROAD TO UTOPIA was more plausible and in that one fish talked.

Harrison Ford did an admirable job considering he’s approaching the age of the artifacts he’s collecting. Action heroes tend to be more believable if they’re younger than Keith Richards. Still, I thought Harrison pulled it off nicely. But Van Damme, please, don’t get any ideas.

Cate Blanchett played Natasha from the Bullwinkle cartoons. Russians are the new Nazis. Sporting a Prince Valiant haircut and a form-fitting gray dominatrix uniform, poor Cate trotted out every Roosky cliché short of “die you capitalist lackey dog!” She seemed to be having fun though. Playing Queen Elizabeth I guess she never got to fire a gatling gun.

It was good to see Karen Allen again. Shame on her for leaving Hollywood to live a normal happy life.

Shia LeBeouf also came aboard to ensure a younger audience and sequels. We learn that his character is really Indy’s son. I would have posted a spoiler alert but village idiots could see that coming from the first frame. There’s one action sequence where Shia is running while dodging a million rounds of machine gun fire. They cut to Indy who has a big grin as if to proudly say, “Yeah, that’s my boy!” It’s the typical reaction any father would have upon seeing their son shot at by hundreds of soldiers.

Steven Spielberg directed with his usual attention to detail and mastery of the camera. But there wasn’t a shot you hadn’t seen from him before. And there were the requisite skeletons, ancient temples, spider webs, snakes, leaping from car to car, treasure maps, curses, monkeys, poison darts, natives, caves, riddles, double crossers, quicksand, fistfights, kidnappings, and cliff hangers to remind you that this was really cool 27 years ago.

What’s most disappointing is how the movie fell apart. The first half hour was rollicking fun and it looked like this was going to be a fun ride. But then it just sank under the weight of its own franchise. Pity because I really wanted to love it. RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK is still one of my favorite action flicks.

But here’s all you need to know about this one: Indiana Jones survives going over what is essentially Niagara Falls and lives through a full-out nuclear explosion.

And then it gets stupid.

56 comments:

Tim W. said...

I haven't it, yet, but your review seems to be very typical of what others have told me. I'd liked to have seen what Frank Darabont's (or Tom Stoppard's or any of the dozen or so A-List writers who wrote a draft that George Lucas rejected) version looked like. I know it's trendy to bash Lucas, but I just can't help, after seeing how he re-imagined Star Wars for the newest generation

DAZ said...

Shia LeBeouf also came aboard to insure a younger audience

Don't be silly Ken. Younger audiences don't buy insurance. They have no sense of their own mortality...

donna said...

I think it's going to make a great thrill ride. Add a library and some waterfalls to that boring Indy ride at D-land, cool stuff!

I liked the ants the best of all, though.

Amber said...

Well, damn it. :(

That bums me right out. Except you didn't like "There Will Be Bloody Old Men Without A Country" and I really liked that movie!

Okay, seriously, we saw "No Country For Old Men" after I'd read your review and I was beyond skeptical. I even sat there with my arms crossed and dared the movie to pull me in. "Go ahead, sucker, try it! Just TRY ME!".

Not just because of your review but because of the hype and the clips I'd seen and other people who hadn't liked it. But I guess we are the type of audience the movie was written for.

Which means?

Nevermind; don't answer, ahahah.

Annie said...

I'm tellin' ya - Sex & the City opens Friday and it won't disappoint you.

I'd take you myself if you hadn't dissed the Yankees the other day.

-AE

Bitter Animator said...

I could forgive all of the stupidity if the film actually had a story. But nobody in the film seemed to have any real goal at any point. And most of the film was just Indy getting captured and recaptured.

I didn't mind LaBeouf at all. I thought he brought some much-needed life to the film after Ford in his old-man pants just reminded why it sucks to get old.

Anyone notice that the artefact that was stolen thousands of years ago was the key needed to get in? So how did the thieves get in way back when?

I just thought it was all muddled, had no clear story and didn't really know what it was doing.

I was left wondering why they got their jobs back at the end.

But it was all forgiven when ShortRound turned up and went totally postal. WHO DA BITCH NOW, DOCCA JONES?! WHO DA BITCH NOW?!!

Fantastic.

D. McEwan said...

I was terribly amused to see that the dwindling few clots of Russian communists left around are offended by how the Soviets are portrayed in the film, and have asked Americans to boycott RAIDERS OF THE LOST AARP.

Hey Rooskies, how's that boycott working out for you?

I know that before I go to a movie I've been waiting years to see, I always stop and first ask "But are the commies okay with this movie?"

The Milner Coupe said...

I had some of the same thoughts after seeing the trailer at the theater this weekend. It felt like watching clips from the other films in the series. Same camera angles, same distance of the shots, same...tint? Nothing new to catch the eye and make me have to see it.

As much as one wants it to retain the feel of the past episodes, it should still be new, and tell a unique story.

Me thinks the makers relied too much on their great reputations and not enough on plain old good film making.

Even so, I'll probably take my wife next weekend. Anything to avoid that goofy Vegas movie.

Phil H. said...

Fortunately I had just had a frontal lobotomy, otherwise known as watching a Spongebob marathon with my five year old, so I rather enjoyed Indiana Jones and the Race Against Father Time. Upon reflection there enough holes in the plot and performances to drive a truck through. And then have the truck go over Niagra Falls.

The highlight for this Scrubs fan was seeing Neil Flynn as the FBI guy, and that came at about the ten minute mark.

Nitpickit said...

The ants were good.

jbryant said...

amber - I may be wrong, but I think the only No Country for Old Men review that Ken posted was by Bob Gale. But it started a damn good discussion.

As for Indy - I bet sales of lead-lined refrigerators go through the roof.

bob smith said...

I waited 20 years for this? I guess I've grown up. My son (21 years old) encouraged mom and I to check out the flick. I fell asleep about midway, for at least 5 minutes. I'm a Spielberg/Lucas fan. Of course the cinematographer was awesome. The film was average. The chase scenes were cool. The ants were fun. I commend Harrison for playing an old dude. He could have been hip and slick and a lover boy, but he played it as if he were a 70 something dude. His body looked fragile. Me thinks that I won't be seeing anymore future Indy movies. In hindsight, perhaps this flick needs to be seen another time or two to be appreciated!

Bob Smith
Covina, Calif.

Lizbeth said...

I call it "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of Dismal Sequels." I can't believe that "Raiders of the Lost Ark" is the film that inspired the 12 year old me to pursue filmmaking while this film just made me want to walk out of the theater.

What a stupid movie. Three waterfalls?? Surviving a nuclear blast? Swinging through the jungle like Tarzan??? What happened to being fresh, clever and original? I can't believe anyone took script credit for a film which basically had no script.

I felt like I was watching a boring video game or a cartoon. There was no sense of real jeopardy. You were never really drawn into the movie at all. It all felt so fake.

As I tell people, if you go in expecting to experience a ride at Universal theme park, you won't be disappointed. Just don't expect to see an actual movie.

This one just seemed like they did if for the fast cash. It's like they knew they were going to make $400 zillion no matter what they put out -- so why bother creating an entertaining and coherent storyline...

Makes you realize that the best writing is being done on TV these days as writers there can't afford to be lazy lest they lose their audience. "Lost" blows this crap out of the water any day. Spielberg and Lucas inspired so many filmmakers and now seem pitifully unaware and almost "lame."

Tom Quigley said...

Haven't seen it yet but could someone tell me: Does Indiana Jones keep having senile flashbacks that he once lived in a galaxy far, far away?

Tom Quigley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dan Serafini said...

I think Ken might be upset about Blake DeWitt making a key error on one of the few Dodger games shown on national TV during Eastern/Central time zones when he wrote this review.

Mike Bell said...

I remember reading that Lucas intended to go back to his "experimental" style of filmmaking.

I hope this isn't it.

A.v.E said...

For the first half of the movie, I sat in the theater thinking, "This is pure Saturday afternoon entertainment. Nothing more. Nothing less." But at the same time, so is Van Damme's Lionheart. And of the two, only one cost $300-million to produce and market.

By the end of Crystal Skull, it became obvious that Lionheart is the superior movie.

Anonymous said...

gatling gun


Patrick from Baltimore

Mary Stella said...

Maybe I'm easy to please, but I enjoyed the movie. If I was a stickler for reality, I'd never have fallen for spirits coming out of the Ark and sucking the life and flesh out of the larcenous villains in the first movie. Nor would I have believed that Indy and Marian survived because they just didn't look.

Anonymous said...

"Raiders of The Lost Arc"?
I found the storyline to be a bit too circular. But, it is remarkable that a movie about Geometry did so well at the box office.

Daniel S. said...

I loved it but that's just me, I guess. The hard thing with sequels is they don't always live up to the originals.

craigm said...

What I learned from the movie is that, if you're going to conduct a nuclear test, do it around the area where you're storing boxes and boxes of priceless artifacts.

See? That's why we can't have nice things.

Kbene said...

I enjoyed the movie from start to finish. Sequals are always hard to write and make because they have to live up to your memory of something that got better over the years. This movie did everything I expected of it. See it, buy some popcorn, and enjoy!

Doug Thompson said...

I enjoyed the first half as well. Thought the chase scenes on campus were pretty good.

However, the ending when the (SPOILER ALERT) space ship takes off imploding everything around it, I thought was done better (and almost identically) in the
X-Files movie when the alien ship is hidden in Antarctica and all the ice falls away as Scully & Maulder are running for their lives.

(SPOILER ALERT # 2) Now that Indy and Marion are married, maybe there's a weekly sitcom in their future. Possibly, they could call it "Indy Knows Best".

Daniel S. said...

One of the best parts in the campus chase scene had to be in the library where the student questions Indy.

Warren Fleece said...

Ants. Why did it have to be ants.

Anonymous said...

Some folks are praising the first half of the movie, and while I'd agree it's better done than the rest, it bothered me because it violated one of the basic precepts of the Indy films - the split between mild-mannered Doctor Jones in the United States and the larger-than-life Indiana Jones that exists in the foreign unknown. That nod to "Okay, here's the real world and then here's the fantasy world where all the crazy stuff happens" is one of those little things that good stories have and bad stories don't.

Mike

jbryant said...

craigm: Luckily, the artifact warehouse was lined with the same kind of lead as that fridge. No harm done.

Anonymous said...

I nominate the Crystal Skull as the worst prop of all time. It looked like cheap plastic with a ball of aluminum foil stuffed into the brain cavity.

The rest of the film wasn't horrible, it just wasn't even close to believable. The suspension of reality field required to accept the movie was just too great for this viewer. Nuclear explosions, waterfall drops, swinging through trees, spacecraft...all were just to unreal to make it an enjoyable film. Compare them to being trapped in a tomb, fist-fights with large men, divining a medieval puzzle. Those seemed possible.

Keith said...

What really struck me is that the trailer for the new Mummy film looks more like an Indiana Jones film than Indiana Jones did. How weird is that?

John said...

They should have thrown in a line with Cate saying, "Kill moose and squirrel," to really make the Natasha connection.

Darth Weasel said...

did anyone else see the ants as a nod to Leinenger Versus the Ants?

I think they were just trying to keep up with the action of the Die Hard franchise while matching the puzzles of the National Secrets franchise, both of which owe a lot to Indy...

be that as it may, I thought the movie was the following;

- silly/stupid; the fridge scene where, after being knocked 17.3 miles inside a box by a nuclear explosion he does the old Batman/Robin cave collapse bit; knock off some dust and walk away unphased, and the driving off the cliff to be saved by a tree

- ridiculous; the Tarzan moments, the magnetic skull, the sword fight doing the splits atop 2 jeeps

-shark jumping; the aliens coming to life and taking off was so weak I was disappointed.

- fun. this one outweighs all the rest. weak story, over the top stunts, plot holes, a twist that, despite the one oblivious individual in our theatre who gasped out loud at the reveal of Shia being Harrison's boy, shocked no reasonable person...we all walked out smiling.

I will take any flick that I walk out of smiling because I had fun no matter what the weaknesses. see also Iron Man, Enchanted, etc.

a lot of movies that a lot of people claim are better miss that fun factor. It might have better story, characters, and camera work, but if it ain't fun why would I drop 30 bucks on it? on the other hand, if I enjoy it...I got 30 more for the next trip.

D. McEwan said...

Mary Stella,

"Nor would I have believed that Indy and Marian survived because they just didn't look."

It wasn't just because they didn't look (unlike Lot's wife). They also survived because they weren't evil, jew-killing Nazis. Honestly, the Nazis were exterminating the Jews, and they expected help from Jehovah? Dopes.

Regarding Karen Allen, anyone remember her terrific performance a few years back on LAW & ORDER as a pitiable neurotic killer? She showed heavyweight acting chops in that one.

Dhppy said...

If somehow, I could have disassociated it from Raiders, it would have just gone along for the ride. But, man it was hard to take. At least the acting was good. If only the script were stronger and the cinematography weren't so damned dreamy looking, and the special effects weren't so over the top... okay, that's pretty much everything. But... at least the acting was good.

Amber said...

jbryant, oh you are right! That wasn't Ken's review on "No Country" but someone else and Ken was merely quoting him.

Ooops! Thanks for the correction! :)

LAprGuy said...

My 7-year-old and I just screened the first three films at home (thanks, $10 DVDs on sale) so I could get her "excited" about Indy. Maybe we'll just watch those three again instead of the $18 for us to see this one ...

(Dammit, Ken, Indy's got a kid?? Oh, and can DeWitt or LaRoche play SS? Haven't we already learned that Hu's not ready?)

Bob said...

Heard it best described as "Indiana Jones meets X-Files".

So Sr. Jones is dead (Connery wouldn't come out and do it), but didn't he get eternal life drinking from the Holy Grail? That was always my understanding.

Aliens have been done to death, and there was really no conclusion to the story or anything. Did like how Lucas managed to get in a plug for the "Young Inidiana Jones" DVDs now out when Indy talked about rolling with Pancho Villa.

Van said...

The gaping plot holes were so bad I hesitate to even call them holes. Caverns? Abysses? Galaxies of stupidity?

Lucas getting story credit on this one is like my dog's mouth getting credit when he takes a dump. In the end, it's all crap.

Emily RugBurn said...

bob -- Re: Henry Jones Sr.

The Knight told them that the "... Grail cannot pass beyond the Great Seal. That is the boundary and the price of immortality."

So as soon as Elsa tried to leave with it (crossing the seal and causing the mini earthquake), bam, no more immortality.

markf said...

I guess I should say SPOILERS

Let's meet the bad Russians. Show the sword. Let's talk about backstory that is way more interesting than we're going to show with Scrubs FBI guy. Let's meet the kid (have him mention fencing, i.e. swordfighting). Let's talk about backstory some more. Let's go to Indy's house and talk backstory, let's go to Peru and talk backstory. Let's find the skull.

Then the skull does all the work.

It reminds me of the inanimate carbon rod that Homer Simpson used in outer space. Hey weren't there ants in that episode too?

I didn't have fun myself; that said I'm sure it will make a billion dollars.

Now, if only Tommy Lee Jones had had the skull in No Country....

growingupartists said...

I must be a real idiot. It's the first movie I've enjoyed in a long time. It didn't hurt that I could by the original 3 movies in a set for $20, and of course I'll buy it once it comes out on DVD. Gotta have the whole collection.

Gnasche said...

I wish Kasdan could have written this one, but I guess he's too busy with Clash of the Titans. He does such a great job with character development in the middle of action sequences.

Anonymous said...

Thoroughly disappointed... as were most of the folks I saw it with. There was dead silence in the packed theatre when the movie ended. People sat there sort of stunned at how bad it was.

The script was terrible, it went on too long, Karen Allen looked like some chubby soccer mom who wandered in from another film, the ridiculous nuclear blast, and the aliens??? Give me a break.

I even thought the opening was bad. Indy drug out from the trunk of a car? It needed a rip roaring open like the first movie.

D. McEwan said...

Sorry guys, I just saw it, and I enjoyed the hell out of it. I walked out with a goofy grin on my face and a spring in my step, and that's what I went for.

Here's the Indy commandment: Thou shalt not watch an Indiana Jones film for the story. Sure, on any remotely real planet, when that refrigerator door opened, Indy's corpse would have rolled out, with every bone reduced to powder. But then this is the guy who, back in TEMPLE OF DOOM, jumped out of a plane in the Himalayas with an inflatable life raft instead of a parachute. Remember the opening song of that film: ANYTHING GOES.

Yeah, they all would have been killed going over those gorgeous waterfalls, and I could never keep track of whose side Ray Winstone was on at any moment, and needing the skull to get in to the chamber meant John Hurt could never have gotten in to steal it in the first place.

So what? Guess what? There are no catacombs in Venice. If you jump out of a plane in a mountain range (or anywhere else) with an inflatable liferaft instead of a parachute, you will die. No old knights live for 500 years. Huge rolling boulders don't just disappear because the editing rhythm says the chase is over. Drinking out of a magic goblet won't heal a gunshot to the gut. If you ride on the deck of a submarine, you will drown when it submerges. If you pull the beating heart out of a man, he won't still be watching as you do it, because he will be dead. Opening the Ark of the Covenant won't wipe you out by the power of God, because there is no God.

I checked my credulity at the door, fastened my seatbelt, grabbed my safety bar, and laughed and had a great time. And when Indy said, "They all had the same problem; they weren't you." I melted. I even got a bit choked up at the wedding, and I don't so that at real weddings.

I loved it. I'm going again.

jbryant said...

I thought the film was okay, but for me its problems weren't really related to suspension of disbelief. Of course we all know these things don't happen in real life, but if that were a big problem for the average film goer, the highest grossing director of all time would be John Cassavetes. I just didn't think it was big in the fun department, and the characters didn't pop. I'm really surprised, d., that you were moved by the romance, which just seemed like an afterthought to me.

Amazing how the mileage varies on these things, isn't it?

D. McEwan said...

Afterthought? Is this your first Spielberg film? They are often about fractured families being repaired, especially sons and fathers.

Hitchcock's definition of a MacGuffin: "The thing the spies care about, but the audience doesn't."

In the Indy series, LAST CRUSADE was not about beating the Nazis to an imaginary goblet. That's just a MacGuffin. It was about healing the relationship between Indy and his dad.

This film was about doing the same thing, next generation down, and finishing up the romance from the first film.

Indy's goal for going to South America wasn't to find a crystal skull. That's just a MacGuffin. It was at first to rescue his old friend Oxley, but WE KNEW that Marian Williams was Marian Ravenwood, and that Indy would find that out when the time came, and that that was what this movie was really about. The MacGuffin was just the excuse for all the running around; the heart of the film was uniting the family.

Let's say you're were one of the 12 people (worldwide) who went in not knowing Mutt was Indy's son (I know you weren't. I'm being hypothetical.), the real tip-off for any close viewer came moments before Marian told him, when they're running through the jungle just before stepping in the not-quicksand (And it was funny that he snapped into being a teacher while sinking in quicksand), Indy said, "This is intolerable," his dad's catchphrase when Indy got him into trouble, thus assuming his father's role in his relationship with Mutt.

On the other hand, it was sort of bizarre when he said, "I have a bad feeling about this," Han Solo's catchphrase. I suppose when encountering aliens and space ships in a Lucas movie, he could be forgiven for momentarily morphing into Han.

No, not an afterthought. It's the center, the very essence of the film. The rest is just heady, amusing eye-candy.

I liked that Cate was playing Natasha (Set up by the Howdy Doody clip?), as I'm sure did my friend June Foray, the real Natasha. (Best compliment I've ever had? June putting her arm around my neck - she was standing on a chair at the time - no joke - on a chair - and saying ion Natasha's voice "You are bootiful darlink!) In fact, given how squirrly John Hurt was, she should have said, "Capture Mutt and Squirrel!"

And for everyone who complained about plausibility. Please. Plausibility in this series went south 8 minutes into RAIDERS, when, after grabbing the gold idol, Indy ran through the chamber, stepping on trigger after trigger, causing HUNDREDS of poison darts to be fired at him, and not one even snagged his clothes. It's way too late to demand believability now.

jbryant said...

d., maybe if I'd rewatched Raiders beforehand, the romance in this one would've seemed less like an afterthought to me (and I specified the romance, by the way, not the fractured family/fathers and sons thing). Granted, it's hard to squeeze genuinely romantic moments in when you're fighting Russians and running from killer ants, but I didn't feel any particular emotion -- SPOILER, I SUPPOSE -- when Indy and Marion got back together. Eighteen or so years apart, and all it takes is a little extreme danger to patch things up? Not saying it can't be done -- just saying this particular script didn't do it for me.

D. McEwan said...

Ah, well I did of course rewatch all three films - twice each - before seeing this one. And the father-son thing and the romance were all of a piece: healing a fractured family requires both.

Seeing loved ones in extreme danger is is a strong stimulant to realizing what they mean to you, so yes, a little extreme danger is exactly what it takes sometimes to patch things up, although discovering you have a son together is also a strong bond, so again, the father-son stuff and the romance are of a piece and inseperable.

As for how well it works, well that's going to vary from person to person. It didn't for you, and many others, but it sure did for me.

Scott Goodwin said...

Worst. Indy. Movie. Ever.

This made Temple of Doom (which I actually liked OK) seem like Shakespeare. As someone else noted here, I expect Indiana to survive incredibly silly things like being thrown for miles inside a refrigerator, then coming out without a scratch. But the endless exposition and repetition dragged it down more than anything. How many times were we told that the skull was that of an alien?

And there was zero character development or challenge. You could argue that that's not the point of these movies, but think back to the first film--Indiana forced to choose between giving up the quest for the ark and its' knowledge or risk giving up his life. And in the 'prequel' Temple of Doom, a callower Indy chasing fortune and glory vs. the lives of his friends. In the last one, he's forced to work with his father vs. compete with his long shadow as he's always done. Here? Nada. It was just moving from point A to B to C to zzzz.

In the other movies, Indy was challenged to come up with inventive solutions to predicaments. The only time I saw that was in the opening, and even then, it was lightweight--it was sheer luck that the refrigerator was lead-lined; not because he brought to bear his significant skillz. In the last half of the movie, it was just going along for the ride.

Sorry if I sound bitter; I wanted something better than Stephen Frears' MUMMY movies. I got a whole lot less with a whole lot more talking.

jbryant said...

scott: Even the alien thing seemed a little fudged -- weren't they supposed to be interdimensional beings or something?

And the first two Mummy movies were directed by Stephen Sommers, not Frears, unfortunately (though I enjoyed the first, the second was truly awful).

kevinbroom said...

Biggest problem with this movie was shown in the opening credits. It read: "Story by George Lucas..."

D. McEwan said...

Well all four Indy films had stories by George Lucas. If that automatically means a film is bad, why have you seen more than one or two?

It was unclear if the aliens were interdimensional, or merely traveled through interdimensions. The characters never learned the answer so neither did we.

JBryant, I am in complete agreement with you about the Mummy movies. First one was fun; the second one sucked, despite the presence of my fantasy-husband Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. And then VAN HELSING was truely unwatchable. Now they're doing another Mummy sequel, and I am so not-looking forward to it.

As for Mr. Goodwin's contention that the new Indy had "zero character development," he certainly saw a substantially different movie than I did.

jbryant said...

The new Mummy is directed by Rob Cohen, who may or may not be an improvement over Sommers. I'm not particularly hopeful, though the trailer hints at some possible fun to be had (having Jet Li and Michelle Yeoh aboard is a big potential plus).

Carlo Conda said...

@ D.
You cannot seriously be defending the last 20 years of Lucas's creative career. You cannot be telling me "Oh, he's great because he made a few good movies two decades ago and milked them later on."

The man is uninspired, and he never shows anyone otherwise. He believes that movies are nothing special and that "filmmakers just go out to make movies, not to make anything special." He believes the audience is at fault for placing movies like Raiders and the original Star Wars trilogy at a high esteem (along with every other classic film ever made).

His excuse for people not liking his movies, and other modern films, is that people are being nostalgic and stubborn. He truly believes his new movies are as good as his old ones, and he doesn't see (or doesn't admit to seeing) what makes good movies good.


If you simply know Lucas as "the guy who made a couple of good movies that I've heard of," you're going to think highly of him. You may want to stay in radio silence if you don't want to actually see what this man is all about or, even worse, why he makes movies.

Anonymous said...

Ah yes, it's no Mannequin 2: Mannequin On The Move - perhaps it would be better received it if starred Ted Danson and had a laugh track; or maybe a Suspend Disbelief Here track for the exceptionally jaded and slow.