Movie Reviews: 'Gigli'
As of Thursday, Gigli, the film with the worst buzz of the year, was also the worst reviewed, according to the Rotten Tomatoes website (http://www.rottentomatoes.com
). Of 42 reviews cited on the website, mostly from lesser-known critics, the film hadn't received better than a poor rating from a single one. Today the major critics are chiming in. Joe Morgenstern in the Wall Street Journal calls it "the worst movie ... of our admittedly young century. More stupefying follies may come, but it's impossible to imagine how they'll beat this one for staggering idiocy, fatuousness or pretension." The word "disaster" crops up in a number of reviews. In fact, it crops up in the very first line of Jami Bernard's in the New York Daily News: "Gigli is a disaster," she writes. "It's a dull disaster," writes Ty Burr in the Boston Globe. "It is a disaster of spectacular proportions," comments Eleanor Ringel Gillespie in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.Other critics take turns parsing the verb "to stink" while still others employ the noun "stinker." "This movie would stink even without its big-ticket stars," comments Manohla Dargis in the Los Angeles Times. Similarly, Jonathan Foreman comments in the New York Post: "It isn't the fault of Ben Affleck or Jennifer Lopez ... that Gigli is such a stinker." Stephen Hunter mounts a stack of pejorative adjectives into a single sentence to describe the movie: "It's enervated, torpid, slack, dreary and, oh yes, nasty, brutish and long." One of the nicest things being said about the film is that it is merely bad. It's "not the crime against humanity it's been rumored to be," notes Charles Taylor of the online Salon magazine. Jan Stuart in Newsday relates, "Pundits in the men's room line after the movie wanted to tar Gigli as 'the first Showgirls of the 21st century, ' but it's only intermittently as awful as that." Mark Caro in the Chicago Tribune calls it "less incompetent than bewildering." A.O. Scott in the New York Times dismisses it as a "hopelessly misconceived exercise in celebrity self-worship, which opens to nationwide ridicule today." Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times even has some nice things to say about it, writing that "although it doesn't quite work, maybe the movie is worth seeing for some scenes that are really very good." And in fact, the film actually receives an enthusiastic review from Amy Dawes of Variety, who calls it "fun to watch" and goes on to praise it for relying "on dialogue and character creation rather than slam-bang action."