Don’t rush out and see New Year’s Eve. Wait until it gets closer to New Year’s Eve – and then hopefully, it won’t be in the theatres anymore.
This will easily make my list of the 10 worst movies of the year. And I’m sure it’ll be on the list of other critics as well.
Let me first mention the few things I liked. I can count them on one hand (and probably type them in one paragraph).
Comedian Larry Miller as the tow trucker driver was funny.
The conclusion to the Halle Barry segment was touching. Now, her taking care of Robert De Niro was just ridiculous. The schmaltzy way he talks about his family not caring about him as he dies in a hospital, with his one wish being to watch the ball drop in Times Square.
De Niro sold out a long time ago, so you can never count on his name in a movie meaning anything. He probably heard HalleBerry would be playing his nurse, and did the movie for scale.
I guess you can say the cast is impressive. Berry and De Niro are Oscar winners, and so is Hilary Swank.
The movie eventually ties a lot of the stories together and it’s like an unfunny version of Love Actually. It’s also a lot like Garry Marshalls other holiday film – Valentine’s Day (with some of the same actors, and the same bad reviews). I’m waiting for Marshall to do a horrible St. Patrick’s Day movie; or better yet, perhaps he should tackle a lesser known holiday like Bosses Day.
I enjoy when Marshall appears in films (is there a funnier scene than him and Albert Brooks going back and forth in Lost in America?). The last good movie he directed though, was The Flamingo Kid (which also had Hector Elizondo, he plays a foreigner that’s the only one that can fix the ball).
The cast also includes Josh Duhamel, Abigail Breslin (who is young, and can be forgiven for doing this film), Jessica Biel, Sofia Vergara (who is rehashing her Modern Family character, which you realize is so much funnier because Modern Family has good scripts); Sarah Jessica Parker (can’t blame her, this movie is no worse than the Sex and the City films), Ashton Kutcher (who may not have ever been in a good movie), Seth Meyers (who is the head writer at Saturday Night Live, and writes funny newscasts…not sure why he didn’t volunteer to write a few jokes for this); Michelle Pfeifer, who has aged well, but the character she played was poorly written (a meek woman being pushed around by her clueless boss, John Lithgow – another Oscar nominee).
There are a few cameos. Ryan Seacrest doesn’t add anything, but Penny Marshall has a funny line.
Oh, the list of big stars continues. I forgot about rapper turned actor Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, who is no Jeff Bridges (or even Beau Bridges); Sienna Miller, Alyssa Milana, and Zac Efron, who wasn’t half bad, as the young man hired by Pfeifer to complete a wish list of ridiculous things she wants to accomplish.
There are jokes in this that are old movie clichés – the pregnant woman yelling at the husband nearby.
There are old jokes (Vergara calling somebody “psychotic” instead of “psychic”); but mostly, there are just unfunny jokes.
Sure, I chuckled when comic book artist Kutcher showed a drawing he made to the woman he was stuck on the elevator with, but their entire scene leading up to that was unromantic, uninteresting, and…I kept wondering why he’d be talking to a woman that looked 5 years younger than him, instead of 15 years older (okay, that was a cheap shot).
I loved how Lithgow was the president of a record label, and was so clueless, he didn’t know an employees name he was writing a check to. And that in his office, instead of the usual gold and platinum records you see on the wall, it was merely a collection of framed albums.
Even though this movie seemed to be written for teenagers, I was baffled as to why the crowd was laughing when a guy put “New York” in his GPS, and it kept saying “New Haven” or “New England.” Until he got so flustered trying to fix the problem, he hit a tree.
If a scene like that seems funny to you, you probably won’t be disappointed by this horribly unfunny film.
I give it ½ a star out of 5, and that’s being generous.