Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Monte Carlo

Directed by Thomas Bezucha.
2011. Rated PG, 108 minutes.
Selena Gomez
Leighton Meester
Katie Cassidy
Juliette Dumouchel
Pierre Boulanger
Cory Monteith
Andie MacDowell
Luke Bracey
Catherine Tate

Recently, a waitress bearing a strong resemblance to Oprah Winfrey became a trending topic on the internet. Why? It’s simple. We’re intrigued by the ideat that somewhere out there is a person who looks exactly like us. What would happen if we ever met that person, or were to be so mistaken for them that others actually thrust us into that person’s station in life. These fascinations have been the impetus for countless movies across a number of genres. 2011 gave us two such movies: the kinda, sorta historical The Devil’s Double for action fans and Monte Carlo, a romantic comedy for the Disney crowd.

Speaking of Disney, our protagonist comes straight from the company’s assembly line of young starlets. Her name is Grace and she is played by Selena Gomez, star of the network’s The Wizards of Waverly Place. She just graduated from high school and on her way to Paris, where she’s dreamed of going ever since she can remember. Her best friend Emma (Cassidy) will gladfully accompany her. Not thinking either of them to be too responsible, Grace’s mom and stepdad have forced stepsister Meg (Meester) to go with them, even though the two don’t get along. Once there, the trio manages to get separated from the world’s worst tour guide. Suddenly, it’s discovered that Grace looks exactly like Cordelia Winthrop Scott a spoiled, ungrateful heiress also played by Gomez (duh). One thing leads to another and the girls soon find themselves living it up in Monte Carlo.

Oh, there’s boys. Each girl meets a handsome, charming guy. One of our young ladies already has a beau back home in Texas that she sorta broke up with. Make no mistake, he will suddenly pop up in Paris, and eventually in Monte Carlo, to reclaim his gal. It’s exactly that kind of movie. By that, I mean it wants nothing more that to be cute and grandly romantic despite not always making sense. It shamelessly panders to its target audience which will like it well enough. However, with that in mind there is nothing here to suggest it had to be released to multiplexes around the globe. This would’ve been right at home and likely more widely seen as a Sunday night TV movie on Disney Channel. Disney didn’t actually make this movie but they definitely could’ve. After all, not only is it just another totally bland rom-com, it never once comes close to threatening the boundaries of its PG rating.

MY SCORE: 4.5/10

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