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The Dilemma is surprisingly poignant for a comedy--the emotions and heartbreak are faced straight on. And Vaughn and James are more than capable of expanding their doofusy personas to show nuance and defeat. The supporting cast, as with all Howard films, is also great--including Channing Tatum as Geneva's partner-in-crime; Queen Latifah, who commands the screen as always; and of course Howard's brother Clint in a cameo. But the heart of The Dilemma is played out among the four main characters, who are solid, engaging, and sometimes appropriately off-putting. The Dilemma asks "Is honesty really the best policy?" And the answer, deftly portrayed with rueful humor and poignancy, is somewhere between secrets and lies. --A.T. Hurley
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Quite frequently, problems occur at my local Blockbuster, where titles that are supposed to be on the shelf on a given day, aren't. So when this movie finally made it to the shelf 1 1/2 weeks after its release date (their excuse was that Direct TV bought out Blockbuster, and they were closing negotiation contracts with movie studios), it was the only fairly new release there on that particular day that I hadn't seen. So, I reluctantly picked it up.
First off, this was improperly billed as a comedy. WRONG! It's not even a dark comedy. I laughed all of three times, and only once out loud. It's all about soul searching and trying to decide how to do what is right in an almost impossibly awkward situation. It's about questioning whether or not to follow your heart or your head. It's about seeing honesty for what it truly is. It's about relationships and the ability to maintain fidelity within one where the entire physical part of it has been removed. It's about much, much more, as well.
Now I can see why everyone bashed "The Dilemma" from here to Kingdom Come. It was billed as a comedy, and the movie viewers came out of the theater confused as to why they barely laughed, let alone why they hardly cracked a smile. The human psyche is a computer that is programmable. If you program that computer to think that it is going to see an comedy and nothing is funny, the computer goes haywire. Somewhere inside it's intricate information pathways is the repetitive phrase, "That does not compute!Read more ›
The problem is, the film isn't funny. Even when it tries, which it rarely does. At moments, the film achieves a certain poignancy that is touching; it examines the crevices of the buddy-buddy relationship (in a much more serious way than, say Judd Apatow usually does), and hits some disturbingly harsh notes. What is most frustrating is that the cast (yes, even Kevin James) is up for the challenge: Vince Vaughn has proven himself a dramatic actor in the past, as has Jennifer Connelly. James holds his own; in fact, when he's at his worst when he's trying for yucks. Winnona Ryder delivers a solid, understated performance (as she did in BLACK SWAN). Queen Latifah is a bit over-the-top in her minor role, but Channing Tatum is surprisingly not; not that he's suddenly metamorphosed into a mesmerizing actor (his "emotional" scene opposite Vaughn makes the latter look like a true thespian), but at least he's trying here.
Allan Loeb's script is a bit two-dimensional, and Ron Howard's directing, as it unfortunately can be, is lazy; this film meanders, and never truly finds its place. It's not funny--I saw it in a packed (I know!) theater, and there were mostly groans--and it's not tender; it's uncomfortable to watch, but usually in the wrong ways. Occasionally the film strikes just the right awkward note, giving you a peak at the film it COULD have been.Read more ›
I did enjoy this flawed film, but probably wouldn't give it a second viewing. If you're looking to laugh a lot this film isn't going to cut it(although there are a few moments of fun), but if you like the actors and troubled romance films, then this one is worth a look.
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A typical movie for both actors. Good entertainment but it certainly doesn't require you to focus on it. If you miss ten minutes of the movie you'll be fine to catch up :-).Published 2 months ago by rapunzel