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Don't believe the critics on this one. It actually is an enjoyable movie, which is in turns funny, sweet and sad.
Go ahead and laugh. Why not? Everyone else does. There's something about karaoke that draws titters. Sure, it's increasingly popular, this singing along to backing tracks, with shows like "Say What! Karaoke" on MTV sending young wannabes into karaoke bars everywhere. But karaoke (Japanese for "empty orchestra"-I guess the singer is supposed to fill the void) is still perceived as something silly that people do when they've had a few too many.
So here's the surprise: "Duets" likes karaoke. In the movie, it's a metaphor for lost souls finding themselves, and, in their conquering a song, an audience, or a competition, filling some kind of spiritual void.
Paltrow, the Oscar-winning actress for "Shakespeare in Love," is the daughter of director Bruce Paltrow, and she comes off as exactly that: a good little girl, more giddy than we've seen her in a while; seeking a reconnection with her father (Lewis), a rock singer reduced to hustling bets at karaoke bars.
Everybody knows that Lewis can sing. But so can Gwyneth, with a shimmering, glistening voice, which she shows off on Jackie DeShannon's "Bette Davis Eyes" and in a duet with Lewis, on Smokey Robinson's "Cruisin'."
And so can Paul Giamatti, best known for his role as "Pig Vomit," the hated radio executive in Howard Stern's film, "Private Parts." A supposed karaoke virgin when he hits a bar, by chance, as he reels out of a dead-end routine as a traveling salesman, he nails Todd Rundgren's "Hello It's Me" and is hooked on singing. (Ah, Hollywood.Read more ›
Ricky Dean (Huey Lewis) is a singer/hustler on the Karaoke circuit; In Tulsa, on his way to a big competition in Omaha, he gets a call and detours through Las Vegas for the funeral of an old friend. While he's there, he meets up with someone with whom he has a special relationship, Liv (Gwyneth Paltrow), who decides she wants to join him on the road. Meanwhile, a salesman named Todd Woods (Paul Giamatti) suddenly realizes he's so burned out from being on the road that he doesn't even know what city he's in, making a pitch to a hotel conference room full of corporate types in Houston, thinking all the while he's actually in Orlando, Florida.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
4 stars if you like good music. Story is a little eaahh but the actors do a good job.Published 2 days ago by Amazon Customer
I just saw this film on showtime and it is so good,I watched it again right away. It was even better the second time and I understood more of the dialogue. Read morePublished 21 days ago by remove
I;m moving and have discarded most of my DVDs but saved this. Great story and music.Published 1 month ago by Suzanne
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