Bowfinger (VHS, 2000, Spanish Version)

259 ratings (249 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating: Very Good
5 stars
40
4 stars
83
3 stars
65
2 stars
41
1 star
20
Share This!
  Ask friends for feedback

How to Make a Bad Movie

Jan 29, 2000 (Updated Apr 5, 2000)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:This is the revenge-sweet script Martin has been dying to write; this is the funny performance Murphy has been dying to give

Cons:Some of the satirical zingers may go over the heads of Hollywood outsiders

Bowfinger is a tribute to bad movie-making. You know the kind Iím talking about: movies where the microphone dips into view, the actors wear their own clothes and the special effects were bought at K-Mart.

Hollywood keeps churning out le cinema stinkoÖ.but thatís okay because it helps sustain the natural order of things in our culture. For every Schindlerís List, someone has to make a Teenage Bimbos From Mars.

In this case, that someone is Bobby Bowfinger (Steve Martin) and the movie in question is a cheddary sci-fi effort called Chubby Rain. Bowfinger is a down-on-his-luck producer-director whose dreams far exceed his abilities. Heís like the kid from Topeka who got off the bus in Hollywood with permanent stardust in his eyes. Heís got a film company (well, sort ofóBowfinger International Pictures operates out of his run-down bungalow), but no film.

Then, one day, his accountant hands him a script heís written (hey, this is Hollywoodóthe land where everyoneís written a script). Bowfinger reads Chubby Rain and the stardust starts twinkling in his eyes again. "I smell Oscar!" he crows. But we know better. After all, Chubby Rainís catch phrase is "Gotcha suckas!" Quick, someone call Ed Wood.

Indeed, Bowfinger does resemble Tim Burtonís comic portrait of the worldís worst director. Brilliantly written by Martin and directed by Frank Oz, Bowfinger is a satire that skewers Hollywood from the inside out. Martinís been hanging around the edges of the movie industry for decades now and I can just picture him standing off in the wings taking notes in preparation for this script. He wields his pen like a sword and itís great to see him get sweet revenge on an industry that forced him to make such cinema stinko as Sgt. Bilko and The Man With Two Brains.

Trouble is, the jokes are so "inside" that some of us on the outside might not get them. The in-and-out-of-rehab Robert Downey Jr. playing a studio executive, for instance; or Bowfingerís clip-on ponytailóthrowaway references to the Tinseltown trade that run like a current underneath the entire movie. Still, itís not as completely inside as The Player.

The other part of Bowfinger that doesnít succeed as well as it should is in the performances of Bowfingerís ragtag crew. Christine Baranski, Heather Graham and Kohl Sudduth as the B-movie actors all play their roles way over the top. Theyíre such simpletons that I wondered if they somehow thought they were shooting The Man With No Brains. I realize this is satire, but it would have been much funnier if the troupers hadnít been such one-note stereotypes.

What saves the movie are the performances from Martin and Eddie Murphy (I canít believe I got this far without mentioning him). Murphy gives two great performances as the paranoid action star Kit Ramsey and the simple-minded lookalike Jiff who is hired by Bowfinger when Ramsey refuses to appear in Chubby Rain.

As the action superstar, Ramsey is a nervous wreck, suffering from delusions that aliens are invading the earth. What a break for Bowfinger because thatís exactly what Chubby Rain is about. After Ramsey wonít give the struggling director the time of day, Bowfinger hits upon a plan to shoot the movie around him. As the crew secretly films Ramsey, the actors rush up to him and deliver lines like "Beware of the pod people!" before dashing off again. When they canít film Ramsey for a crucial scene, they hire Jiff to do all the hard stuff like walking across a busy interstate at rush hour. (Hereís another inside joke: Murphy had an identical scene in the box office bomb Holy Man where he strode confidently between the whizzing cars; here, Jiff is reduced to a puddle of fear when he makes his mad dash across the interstate.)

Murphy pulls out all the stops in both roles, spoofing ego-laden superstars as Kit while giving a sweetly funny performance as the endearing Jiff. Just as Martin gets to sinks his revenge claws into the industry, Murphy also seems to be enjoying his just deserts for laugh-free movies like Life and Dr. Dolittle.

All in all, Bowfinger is one of those smart comedies that may be too smart for its own good. Itís not the laughfest that the blurbs proclaim it to beómore like a chucklefestóbut there are enough sharp jabs at Hollywood to keep it applying Band-Aids for years to come.


Recommend this product? Yes

Read all comments (5)

Share this product review with your friends   
Share This!


Related Deals You Might Like...

Rosetta Stone Version 4: Spanish (Spain) Level 1 - Mac/Windows

Rosetta Stone Version 4: Spanish (Spain) Level 1 - Mac/Windows

Language doesn't have to be a barrier. Whether you're traveling, moving to a new country, or speaking with business partners, Rosetta Stone language s...
Best Buy

$179.99

FREE Shipping
Office Xp (SPANISH): Version 2002 / 2002 Version (Manuales Imprescindibles / Essential Manuals)

Office Xp (SPANISH): Version 2002 / 2002 Version (Manuales Imprescindibles / Essential Manuals)

Book annotation not available for this title. Title: Office Xp Author: Cuffi Roig, Toni Publisher: Grupo Anaya Comercial Publication Date: 2005/09/30 ...
Sears Marketplace
PowerPoint 2013 - Spanish - Windows (Electronic Software Download Version)

PowerPoint 2013 - Spanish - Windows (Electronic Software Download Version)

PowerPoint 2013 has a brand new look. It's cleaner and primed for use on tablets so you can swipe and tap your way through presentations.
PCM

$109.99

+$13.06 shipping
Word 2013 - Spanish - Windows (Electronic Software Download Version)

Word 2013 - Spanish - Windows (Electronic Software Download Version)

With Word 2013 you can create more beautiful and engaging documents and you can work with more media types--like online videos and pictures. You can e...
PCM

$109.99

+$13.06 shipping
Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus - Windows

Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus - Windows

Your beloved VHS tapes have been sitting untouched for years. You don't even have a VCR to play them anymore. And that collection of cassette tapes co...
Best Buy

$69.99

FREE Shipping
Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus
Sears Marketplace
Outlook 2013 - Spanish -Windows - (Electronic Software Download Version)

Outlook 2013 - Spanish -Windows - (Electronic Software Download Version)

Outlook 2013 has a brand new look. It's cleaner. It's designed to help you focus on what's important with a clear view of email calendars and contac...
PCM

$109.99

+$13.06 shipping
Roxio Easy VHS to DVD Plus - ( v. 3 ) - box pack - 1 user - Win - English

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD Plus - ( v. 3 ) - box pack - 1 user - Win - English

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus easily creates DVD movies from your VHS tapes and Hi8 or V8 home videos.
Dell Small Office

$59.99

FREE Shipping
Excel 2013 - Spanish - Windows (Electronic Software Download Version)

Excel 2013 - Spanish - Windows (Electronic Software Download Version)

Excel 2013 has a brand new look and new features that let you get away from walls of numbers and make better business decisions.
PCM

$109.99

+$13.06 shipping


Ads by Google