Directed by Martin Brest.
Written by Martin Brest.
Starring Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez.
Release Year: 2003
Review Date: 8/12/03
Every day since “Gigli” was released, I knew
I had to see it. I had to know for myself--is this going to top
“Gerry” as my worst viewing experience of the year? Is it??
“Gigli”, and the bad hype surrounding it,
reminds me a lot of
“Battlefield Earth” from back in 2000. That
John Travolta nightmare WAS bad, but it wasn’t the universal dogshit
that all the critics made it out to be. It was like everyone just
kind of jumped on the bandwagon and gave the thing a bad review, but
there were a couple of decent action scenes and the special effects
weren’t all bad, so I gave it a Rental.
By that token, “Gigli” is not even close to
being the “worst film ever made”, as I read with one review; shit,
it isn’t even the worst film of the year, as “Gerry” is 55 times
worse than “Gigli” could ever be.
“What’s the Worst That Can
Happen?”, that POS starring Martin Lawrence and Danny DeVito from
last year, is a ton worse than “Gigli.” But, “Gigli” doesn’t start
off too well, and it has one of the worst plots of the year, to be
sure--tough guy Mafioso Larry Gigli (Ben Affleck) is tasked with
picking up a retarded kid named Brian (Justin Bartha) because Brian
is the brother of a federal court judge that needs to be extorted by
the mob. So, for the whole movie, Larry needs to keep Brian “out of
sight”...oh, speaking of which, he is assigned a second hitman
named...Ricki (Jennifer Lopez), who is also tasked with taking care
of the kid. So, for damned near the whole movie, we have to suffer
through watching Larry, Ricki and Brian hang out; this is mostly
Affleck, not exactly on the path to Oscar
acting gold anytime soon, is even worse than normal in this film.
But, I will give him credit for fighting through this horrific
script by former Oscar nominee Martin Brest (director of “Beverly
Hills Cop” and “Midnight Run”, for Chrissakes!) and doing his part
to try and make this film passable. Christopher Walken shows up in
a cameo here and I’m sure it’s the worst work of his career; even
Walken seems to know it as he waltzes in and out of his scene.
Better is a spot appearance by Al Pacino, who clearly owed Brest a
favor after they teamed up for “Scent of a Woman.” But overall, the
acting in “Gigli” is bad, really bad. So are the music, the pacing,
and the shitty-on-fried-shit ending.
But, there are some nuggets of goodness to
be had here.
1) Unintentional retard stuff comedy
I’m already going to hell, so it’s not like
I’m going to surprise you here--whether Brest intended for it or
not, there are three solid laughs attributed to watching Brian
interact with the limited environment created in the film. The two
guys sitting next to me burst out into laughter every time the kid
broke into his trademark toothy grin, and I was laughing right along
with them. Not in an evil way, mind you, just good clean fun.
Note: This retard stuff is not nearly as good as the All-Time
Greatest Retard Joke Ever--you know the movie:
“What’s your passion?”
“Working with retards.”
2) A couple of solid lines of dialogue
Most of the script for “Gigli” blows, but
there is a great line where Ricki tries to get Larry to understand
the difference between answering with a “Sure” or a “Yes.” I can’t
repeat the line here, but trust me, quality. And, it’s always great
when you have characters trying to recite old rap lyrics from the
late 80s; damn, I could watch that kind of stuff all day.
She is getting worse with each film as an
actress, but the girl sure is easy on the eyes. J.Lo, like Halle
Berry or Salma Hayek right now, can single-handedly save a film for
me with just their looks.
“Gigli” is not good, to be sure; it’s just
not Hard Vice material. Do I have to go and see “Spy Kids 3-D” now?
Comments? Drop me a line at
Bellview Rating System:
"Opening Weekend": This is
the highest rating a movie can receive. Reserved for movies that
exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development,
setting...or Salma Hayek. Not necessarily in that order.
"$X.XX Show": This price
changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently,
it is the $9.50 Show. While not technically perfect, this is a
movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.
"Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca",
but you'll have a great time watching. The $9.50 Show won't win any
Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see
"Matinee": An average movie
that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.
Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about
yourself. A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave
the theater saying "That wasn't too bad...man, did you see that
Lakers game last night?"
"Rental": This rating
indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your
friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one." Mostly forgettable, you
couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to
watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the
video store was out of copies of "Ronin." If you can, see this
movie for free. This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a
"Hard Vice": This rating is
the bottom of the barrel. A movie that only six other human beings
have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen. A Shannon
Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every
one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a
movie. Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or
"Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this
movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!
(Warning: strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard