By Alan Scherstuhl
By Charles Taylor
By Melissa Anderson
By Inkoo Kang
By Amy Nicholson
By Sam Weisberg
By Stephanie Zacharek
By Chuck Wilson
Lona Williams's ham-fisted script insures that the fix is in, in more ways than one. Like Michael Ritchie's Smilethe 1975 Altman wannabe that more or less invented this particular subgenreDrop Dead Gorgeous feasts on the spectacle of the contestants' mealymouthed interviews and idiotic dance rehearsals. Will you appreciate a ballerina who signs inspirational lyrics as she dances? Or laugh at the grotesque joke of an anorexic in a wheelchair lip-synching "Don't Cry Out Loud"? Although the big goof is Richards singing "Can't Take My Eyes Off of You" to a crucified Jesus, the most appropriate number would have something to do with shooting ducks in a barrel.
As an antidote to midsummer movie fatigue, Film Forum is reviving Billy Wilder's Some Like It Hot in a new 35mm print. Wilder's 1959 smash, one of the funniest and most resilient Hollywood comedies of the past four decades, was itself a sort of retrospectiveset in 1929, it placed itself in the comic traditions of Mack Sennett and the Marx Brothers while featuring a large supporting cast of Hollywood veterans.
Drop Dead Gorgeous
Directed by Michael Patrick Jann
Written by Lona Williams
A New Line Cinema release
Two jazz musiciansTony Curtis and Jack Lemmonwitness a gangster massacre and escape Chicago by passing themselves off as members of an all-female band whose featured performer is Marilyn Monroe. Poured into her translucent gowns, Monroe is doubly exposedshe plays a voluptuous lost soul with disconcerting vulnerability. Still, she rises to the occasion in the brilliant early scene where she shares an upper berth with the ostensibly female and hilariously overstimulated Lemmon. (As drag acts go, Curtis talks the talk but Lemmon walks the walkjust watch him dance the tango with Joe E. Brown.)
The movie is a bit too long for its basic joke but, if you haven't seen it recently, that famous closing line will leave you laughing all too soon. A corpse-littered comedy riffing on homosexuality, transvestism, impotence, and masochism (thus arguably more daring than Eyes Wide Shut), Some Like It Hot was so popular that one of the networks considered using it as the basis for a sitcom.
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