Free Pants' Take: When robots become self-aware and enslave us, they will point to this movie and Jim Belushi's long career as the reasons for our demise. My heart sank after reading this synopsis. The questions that arise from this premise lead to incredulity if not madness.
There are five (5) credited screenwriters for this movie and one imagines the sad conferences where teams of screenwriters argued for and against James' urinating into a potted plant to garner the affections of Leslie Bibb. I imagined breathless calls to loved ones during lunch breaks. (Or, perhaps it was one of the few immediately agreed upon gags.) The only thing missing is additional screenwriter and suicide inducer Nia Vardalos to add some hilarious texting gags between a sexy college student, Kevin James, and a flatulent salamander.
The movie fails as entertainment, but it does succeed as a mass homicide note.
Unexpected Scene: James takes the advice of Bambi the Black Widow (voiced by the luminous Jennifer Tilly) and beds, murders, and eats Leslie Bibb.
Larry Crowne: -9 million out of 7 Golden Slacks
Synopsis (from imdb.com): After losing his job, a middle-aged man reinvents himself by going back to college.
Joe's Take: I've read that one of the worst things in life is wasted talent. Not true. The worst thing in life is the movie Larry Crowne. I know. I just watched it. It is the brainchild of Nia Vardalos, who punished us with a never-ending sea of romantic comedies (and John Corbett), and its lack of human understanding and interaction makes it a study in insanity.
Here are the minutes from the screenplay conference where the script was written (in about 1/2 hour).
Producer: Hanks' character is broke, unemployed, and adrift in loneliness.
Nia: Yes! But then he meets a gorgeous 20-something who befriends him, rearranges his home, his hair, and his priorities!
Producer: Why would she do this? He's twice her age and he's boring and unattractive.
Producer: So Hanks falls for her, right?
Producer: Why not? Wouldn't a guy fall in love with a beautiful girl who paid so much attention to him?
Nia: NO! Because!!!
Producer: Who is the bad guy?
Nia: No bad guy! Everyone is earnest, truthful and nice. Just like in life!
Producer: Shouldn't we try to make it funny?
Nia: It is funny. Like in one scene, Hanks' professor confiscates his cell phone! OMG, hilarious!
[producer shoots himself in the face]
Unexpected scene: In a twist ending, it's revealed that Hanks' wife left him because he beat her. After Roberts kisses Hanks in the closing scene, he hits her and sends her into the hospital.