They say clothes makes the person, but does it really? Do clothes truly have the power to turn a person into something else? At my last visit to the bank for work I noticed all the men were now wearing sport coats; in the past they only needed to wear their branded shirts. I asked one of the tellers why he was wearing the jacket and he said the bank wanted to present a professional, knowledgeable staff to the public. Yet I did not see a difference since no one could explain why the bank kept pulling out international checks from our lockbox and mailing them to us. I would then have to bring the checks to the bank and deposit them; it made no sense. On a more personal level I have known a variety of people who feel better when they are wearing some new article of clothing. I can understand even though I do not place much importance into what a person wears. As long as it is clean I do not care. However for some individuals clothes can be used as their calling card in making a strong statement. If it is a hazardous materials suit or protective bomb defusing clothing, then yes that makes a bold presentation. UNIFORMS were the catalyst for this comedic movie. Jake Johnson (21 Jump Street, New Girl-TV) and Damon Wayan Jr. (The Other Guys, New Girl-TV) played best friends Ryan and Justin. When the two dressed up as police officers for a costume party, the pair discovered they were being treated quite differently compared to their everyday life. However the fun and perks that came with wearing those uniforms may not have been enough for the friends after they started to take the joke too far. I read an interview that was done with the director, where he said he allowed the two actors to ad lib many of their scenes together because they already had established a relationship with each other on their television show. It worked for this film since I found there was an emotional connection between the 2 men that helped form convincing characters. The humor and funny situations started out strong; but halfway through, the story lost the surprise factor and became repetitive. Part of the reason had to fall on the director’s shoulders; however, the script did him no favors. Having James D’Arcy (Hitchcock, Cloud Atlas) as Mossi and Rob Riggle (The Internship, Big Miracle) as Segars was a plus in getting to the end of this picture without complete boredom. Overall the story was not hard to figure out. This led me to believe several scenes were just done to provide filler, adding enough time to stretch what would have been a sitcom segment into a full length movie.
Executives of sanitation and water plants could not explain the sudden drop in water usage. There were many people walking around with a musty smell and slightly unpolished look. Hotel employees were perplexed in the sudden cancellation of room reservations. Well, maybe things were not that bad; however, you cannot tell me there were not a lot of people who thought twice about taking a shower, after they saw the movie Psycho. I remember the first time I saw this movie and how my heart raced. When a film is considered a classic, I enjoy hearing the back story on how forces came together to create such a great movie. This was one of the reasons I wanted to see this film, along with Anthony Hopkins’ (Thor, Proof) performance as famed director Alfred Hitchcock. When the story focused on the birth of Psycho it was fascinating. Even with all the success Hitchcock had with the movie studio, they balked at his plans, refusing to finance the project. I got a kick out of all the tidbits surrounding the filming process. It was fun to see Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation, The Avengers) and James D’Arcy (W.E., Cloud Atlas) playing Janet Leigh and Anthony Perkins. In some scenes Anthony Hopkins was believable as Hitchcock; but at times, it seemed as if he slipped out of character and the makeup was odd. For me, the star of this movie was Helen Mirren (The Last Station, The Debt) as Alfred’s wife Alma Reville. I had no idea, if the story here is true, that she was as influential as she was portrayed. The problem I had was when the story veered off the making of Psycho and delved into the relationship Alma and Alfred had, it did not make for a cohesive story line. I appreciated the things I learned from this interesting movie; I just wished it had been more.
2 3/4 stars
Forgive me Madonna fans; I really wanted to like this film. The score was a wonderful accompaniment to this stylish film and the costumes were perfect. In fact, you had Madonna singing during the closing credits. She was the director and co-writer of this schizophrenic film. There were two stories being played out in this movie. The better of the two was about King Edward VIII, played by James D’Arcy (An American Haunting, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World), who abdicated the throne for the woman he loved, Wallis Simpson played by Andrea Riseborough (Happy-Go-Lucky, Never Let Me Go). The other story was about Wally Winthrop, played by Abbie Cornish (Bright Star, Sucker Punch), who became inspired by Mrs. Simpson’s life to find happiness in her own life. I have seen Abbie act and know she can be rather good; however, under this tedious and boring script, along with utterly lifeless direction from Madonna, Ms. Cornish was dreadful. Some of her scenes were ridiculous; I would have thought Madonna would have studied up on camera angles and how to set up a scene. Andrea’s performance as Wallis was the most real for me. Also, I found her looks to be quite interesting. With the curious idea of having two stories, one in the past and one in the present; it was a shame Madonna did not deliver a more fitting film. I stood on a folding chair in cowboy boots for 3 hours during a Madonna concert. Gratefully, I did not have to spend the money nor wait in line to see this messed up movie.
1 2/3 stars — DVD