Because I am down with a cold this weekend, I spent much of the morning in bed watching television. I always have a supply of Netflix DVDs on hand, and in this week's selections included Reese Witherspoon's reprisal of the role of Elle Woods in Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde. I loved the first Legally Blonde, and in spite of my skeptical attitude towards sequels, I had high expectations for the second chapter in the Elle Woods saga. After all, how can you not love Elle Woods? Here is a girl who gained a last minute entrance to Harvard Law School so that she follow her college sweetheart, has more pink than Pepto-Bismol, and created the trademark bend and snap move that so many of us girls have used since 2001?
Reese Witherspoon executive produced the flick, because at this point she is a real "movie star" and gets to call her own shots and make top dollar. I am an old school Reese fan, ever since the first time I watched Freeway. I would probably watch any movie she was in, simply because she was in it.
The story was cute, if not totally unbelievable. We find Elle working at a law firm, planning her wedding in Fenway Park and on her way to a big promotion when she discovers that Bruiser's mother is being held at a lab that tests cosmetics on animals. Her desire to fight the corporation doing the testing causes her to lose her job, and discouraged but not deterred, she decides to take her fight to Washington D.C. Hilarious hijinks ensue, and we are treated to a pink and fluffy happy ending in true Elle Woods style. Though not as original or funny as the first, Legally Blonde 2 was satisfying for Elle Woods fans the way Scarlett was satisfying for Scarlett O'Hara fans. The first installment was good, but you still wanted to know what happened next. Legally Blonde 2 features supporting roles from Sally Field, Regina King and Bob Newhart, while Luke Wilson, Jennifer Coolidge, Alanna Ubach and Jessica Cauffiel all reprise their former roles.
I'm not done with Reese for the weekend. My other Reese Witherspoon selection from Netflix is "Fear" co-starring Mark Wahlberg. I've seen this before, but I haven't watched it in quite some time, and I am interested in reacquainting myself with Reese's work. The thing I remember most about this movie is that Mark Wahlberg's character was a psychopath and he made a homemade tattoo with "Nicole 4 eva" on his arm and my friend and I used to joke about that all the time. It sounded funny to say it out loud in the accent we thought he would have saying. "Nicole fo-evah" or something like that. I'm not going to say that Reese is my only draw to this movie; I'll make any excuse to stare at Mark Wahlberg because he is fine and ever since the "I'm a star" monologue at the end of Boogie Nights, I've been unable to tear away from the screen when he's on it.
Farenheit 9/11 was the first Michael Moore movie I had ever watched, but after viewing it, I wanted to see more of Moore's work.
Roger & Me is Moore's humorously sad look at how General Motors destroyed his hometown of Flint, MI by closing plants and eliminating over 30,000 jobs. The documentary includes footage of a sheriff's deputy conducting evictions on those who became unemployed because of the layoffs and could no longer afford to pay their rent. The town's repeated failed attempts to reinvent itself and encourage commerce are documented along with the decline in general morale and the increase in crime and desperation. Throughout it all, we are taken along for the ride as Moore repeatedly tries to get an interview with Roger Smith, the GM exec responsible for the closings and the layoffs.
I have to say, I am once again impressed with Moore's ability to show the human side of these stories. These are the stories that the news media doesn't show.
I am in the process of trying to finish Bowling for Columbine. I am finding it hard to get past the images from the surveillance cameras at Columbine High school on the day of the shootings. He includes 911 tapes of people calling in for help. It is truly disturbing, but I understand why he did it. In this documentary, Moore explores America's obsession with guns. He includes footage of himself opening a bank account at an institution where instead of toasters, they give new customers a shotgun.
He included a clip from Chris Rock's Bigger and Blacker where he went into the whole "bullets should cost $5,000" rant. Moore knows exactly how to use comedy and humor to drive home a point. He's good at what he does.
I suppose I'll get through Bowling for Columbine this weekend, watch Fear and then send the movies back in preparation of a new shipment of DVDs. The next five movies on my list? Breakin' All the Rules, Le Divorce, Mona Lisa Smile, Best Laid Plans and Man in the Moon.