Sunday, April 22, 2007

Devoid of Development: In the Land of Women

In the Land of Women
Directed by Jon Kasdan
Released April 20, 2007

Adam Brody stars as Carter Webb, a young soft-core porn writer (??!!) facing a mid-life crisis of sorts after his celebrity girlfriend dumps him. He decides for some reason to move in with his elderly and generally senile grandmother in Michigan, where he meets not one but two attractive women: Sarah Hardwicke, a mother of two recently diagnosed with cancer, and her daughter, Lucy, an angsty teenager. Where will he go from there?

"In the Land of Women" is possibly the most underdeveloped film I have seen in years. The explanation for Carter's attraction to either of the women is never given, and their relationships move far too quickly to be described logically. Both Sarah and Lucy are generally empty characters, who have few interesting personal qualities to offer. Lucy's younger sister, Paige, is a faux-mature character who is unstoppably obnoxious and preachy to an unbelievable level. Carter himself is only mildly intruiging, and his occupation as that of a porn writer does not go along with any others aspects of his character. Carter's grandmother adds nothing to the film, and the humor related to her is random and makes little sense as it is placed in the film.

Adam Brody gives possibly the most effortless performance ever as Carter, and while he is not bad, the role is written simply and he does stand out in any way. Meg Ryan is more than mildly annoying as Sarah, a character who is supposed to be extremely sympathetic. Kristin Stewart, a cross between Missy Peregrym ("Life As We Know It," "Heroes") and Evan Rachel Wood, is unenthuiastic and does not take the writing of her character to an interesting level. Makenzie Vega cannot be faulted for the poor crafting of her character, that of younger sister Paige. And Olympia Dukakis has taken a boring and unsubstantial role as the grandmother.


No comments: