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"The Whole Nine Yards"

Directed by Jonathan Lynn.
Written by Mitchell Kapner.
Starring Bruce Willis, Matthew Perry, Amanda Peet and Michael Clarke Duncan.
Release Year:  2000
Review Date:  4/4/00


"The Whole Nine Yards" is the worst fucking piece of shit movie I have seen all fucking year.  I am offended, hurt, insulted and flat-out pissed that I just spent eight fucking dollars of my hard-fucking-earned money to get stadium seating and watch this bitch-ass production unfold.  I am currently trying to figure out if this piece of shit is worse than Willis' previously worst film, "Hudson Hawk", a movie so bad that Sandra Bernhard came off looking like a fucking Oscar winner, and she can't act for jiminy cricket shit.

This movie came out in mid-February, I believe, and it was the number one movie at the box office for three straight weeks.  How?  The easy answer is that it has got Bruce Willis--while no Olivier, the man has shown promise in movies like "Pulp Fiction" and last year's "The Sixth Sense" with his acting.  So, my first question is, did Willis read this fucking script?  This script, I'm sorry, is horrible.  It's horrible.  I'm not going to even talk about how bad Matthew Perry is as Willis' dentist-as-next-door-neighbor, trying 120% to play Chaplin, the Three Stooges, Jim Carrey, and Benny Hill all rolled into one...and being completely unfunny!  I am taking for granted that you know the plot, but in case you don't:

Jimmy the Tulip (Willis), one of Chicago's baddest hitmen, is hiding out in Montreal, living next door to a nice-guy dentist named Oz (Perry) that is trying to figure out why he is married to a money-hungry bitch of a wife (Rosanna  Arquette, playing her role in "Pulp Fiction" with a French accent).  That's where it starts; it ends with some extra characters, like a wannabe hitwoman (Amanda Peet, gratuitously naked in two scenes that did nothing for me sexually...sad), the Tulip's partner-in-crime Freddie (Michael Clarke Duncan, presumably taking this role because he is good friends with Willis in real life), and a crime boss (Kevin Pollak, sadly in need of a paycheck:  after "The Usual Suspects", one wonders who is making his choices), as $10 million in life insurance money needs to find a home, preferably in the Tulip's bank account.

I'm not really sure why--or how--Perry has been in so many movies.  While an attractive fellow, he has played the EXACT SAME CHARACTER in all of his movies, and on his TV show friends: a poor man's Hugh Grant.  At least Grant admits to the fact that it is the only character type he knows how to play!

Let's stop for a minute.  I think that “Friends” is one of the worst piece of shit TV shows in the history of television.  I'm still waiting to only hang out with really, really, really attractive's tough to have six model friends, but it's cool, because they have all dated each other!  Have you ever been to New York City?  I have, lots, actually.  I don't know of one MOTHER FUCKING CITY FUCKING BLOCK that features this many white people.  And, I like white people!  I count white people among my best friends!  I've dated white people!  The concept of six white people hanging out is not strange, not at all.  What IS strange is even when these six people are in public, there aren't even any fucking token minorities in those scenes!  No tokens!  No fucking tokens!  Not even an attractive Latina woman, walking down the street:  they're the hot fucking demographic, and you can't get one hot Latina woman on a top-5 rated show?  I dare you, watch this fucking show on will see that I am dangerously close to being right.

Okay, sorry for getting sidetracked.  This piece of shit movies features every single hitman movie cliché ever--did I already mention that Duncan (black guy) and Willis (white guy) are hitman partners in this movie?--and, the script is so shopworn that even when it tries to make fun of itself, it can't be funny.  Diana counted two laughs during the whole movie, not including the number of times that she laughed when I threatened to walk out of the theater.  When there is a brief scene of violence near the end of the movie, the movie doesn't know what it should do:  treat some deaths as serious, or try and make the audience laugh, and they succeed at doing neither.  Argh!

Michael Clarke Duncan--now, the Oscar-nominated Michael Clarke Duncan—can do better than this, and I do you no disservice by telling you he gets killed.  [See movie cliché 14.5.8(b), "Movie starring white actor, with likable, funny black supporting actor as partner".]  Pollak, who rose from the ashes known as "Ricochet" to nab a part in "The Usual Suspects", appears headed back to the pits for this part, playing a mob boss so stereotyped that his name would be funnier if it was just "mob boss."  That way, at least the filmmakers would admit to us that they are ripping off every mob movie since the 40s in putting his character together.  Pieces of tu, monsieur Willis?  Let's not forget, that two of his last three pictures were this movie, and the by-all-accounts-abysmal "The Story of Us", which one Washington Post reporter last year called one of the three worst pictures of the last 20 years.  Is he losing his touch?  "The Sixth Sense" was a Bruce Willis movie, even if he turned out to not be the star.  But, I like Willis and I am officially starting to worry about him.

This movie should be avoided at all costs.  It is one of the worst fucking films I have ever seen, and mainly because there is so much talent in it that one wonders if the original script was something completely different--why would so many talented people have committed to it?  Unequivocably unfunny, which is tough to stomach for a comedy.

Rating:  Hard Vice


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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