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"The Ladies Man"

Directed by Reginald Hudlin.
Written by Tim Meadows, Dennis McNicholas and Andrew Steele.
Starring Tim Meadows, Karyn Parsons and Billy Dee Williams. 
Release Year:  2000 
Review Date:  10/18/00 


As I played "Soul Calibur" on my new Dreamcast last night in the casa, I realized that I have, in fact, given a large majority of my recent free time to video games.  Being a part of the "Video Game Palace"--my new nickname for the townhouse that I reside in--I have video games everywhere that I turn.  We now have a Dreamcast, a PlayStation (with a PlayStation2 on the way), a Sega Master System (circa 1986), a Gameboy and a Game Gear, with a Sega Genesis and an old-skool Nintendo on the way courtesy of Keith.

What is funny to me is listening to women talk about how much they despise their game-loving male friends.  Why, ladies, do you hate us for playing what we love?  It is innocent and pure, like a mountain spring.  It doesn't involve other women, so you know I am not out there cheating on you!  It usually happens at my house, so it's not like you are left wondering, "Now, where is Justin gonna be at TONIGHT?"  And, it is a reasonably cheap habit over the long term, so I have got plenty of money left over to spend on the ladies.  Most women don't know that the magic words coming out of their mouths upon seeing someone playing games on a Dreamcast would be

"Hey, you've got a Dreamcast too?"

Because if a girl said that to me, it would add 1.5-to-2 points to her profile (the Chuck and Justin female scale only goes to 9.9, because no one is perfect).  The video game-playing female is roughly equivalent to the girl that can throw a spiral, the girl that never mentions her weight, the girl that used to be a "beer man."  It is that rare seed that many men search for, but never find.

Of course, being single leaves me with plenty of "guy time" to hang out in sweat pants and play video games.  To break up the monotony tonight, Chuck "The Verb" Longer and I rolled out to see "The Ladies Man", fully expecting to get a few laughs in before going to bed.  This movie clocked in at 84 minutes, or about half an hour longer than "Passenger 57", and the 84 minutes that you get are like your brand new pillows:  fluffy.  The plot for this movie is so shallow it seems nonexistent.  Basically, Leon Phelps (Tim Meadows) is the Ladies Man, a professional ladykiller that has seen more ass than Homer Simpson's couch and has a radio show to talk about how much "tang" he gets on a regular basis.  The FCC finally kicks him off the air after getting multiple complaints from callers seeking advice on how to get the ladies, and Leon is left without a job.  So, Leon and his partner Julie (Robyn Parsons, hot) get on the trail in search of new work at different radio stations, but continue to come up short.  After getting kicked off of a Christian radio show broadcast for his overly explicit description of the missionary position, Leon spends more time searching for the perfect woman...although we in the audience know the whole time who Leon will eventually fall for.  A minor subplot involves a bunch of men pissed off at Leon (who laid a bunch of their wives and girlfriends) chasing after him to get revenge, led by Will Ferrell as a former Greco-Roman wrestler.

Coming into this one, we figured if we got a couple of hearty laughs, it would be worth it.  Luckily, we were right!  Meadows is hilarious as the Ladies Man, and his regular talk about skanks, sex and cognac is pretty funny.  You will also spend an inordinate amount of time saying "Thath cool" after seeing this movie to imitate Leon's ridiculous lisp.  Ferrell is great in support and by far the best scene in the movie involves Leon getting ready for a date with Tiffany Thiessen near the end of the film.  Leon gets dudded up in some bad-ass 70s-style clothes and then vogues in them on a rotating platform with some hardcore pimp music playing in the background.  Hilarious!  And, there are plenty of hot women for you to look at, so that kept me awake too.

Admittedly, like many other “Saturday Night Live”-themed movie products (i.e., "A Night at the Roxbury", "Superstar", "Wayne's World"), the actual plot and backstory of the characters in "The Ladies Man" is so weak that the movie is slow during many portions because the writers have no idea what Leon should do in between his radio show and his sex scenes.  The one-trick-pony nature of these films is ideally suited to the 90-minute format, but this movie could have been 45 minutes and been very, very good.  There is simply no substance to carry the film over the full hour and a half, which is kind of sad when you think about it.

But overall, there are a few scenes that are just rolling-in-the-aisle funny, so it is worth checking out for a daytime show.

Rating:  Matinee


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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 "Office Space"). 

"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, 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 half stars." 

"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 Vice"-rated movies.)

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The "fine print":
All material by Justin Elliot Bell for SMR/Bellview/ except where noted
© 1999-2009 Justin Elliot Bell This site was last updated 01/08/09