Sunday, November 18, 2012

Movie with Abe: Price Check

Price Check
Directed by Michael Walker
Released November 16, 2012

Parker Posey has established a reputation for herself as being more than capable of playing crazy. She’s the perfect candidate, therefore, to portray Susan Felders, the eccentric new executive who arrives to shake up a regional supermarket chain office. Bringing her signature blend of energetic zaniness and peculiar appeal, Posey dominates the mediocre new comedy about Peter, the employee who Susan takes under her wing as her go-to guy and whose life she upends considerably by inserting herself into it full-force. A clever title isn’t enough to make this somewhat off-putting and dull film worthwhile.

Eric Mabius, best known for his part as shallow editor Daniel Meade on “Ugly Betty,” takes on a role with a similar work ethic but different attitude about his family as Peter, who puts in minimal effort and never needs to bring his work home, allowing him to spend plenty of time with his wife and young son. His boss’ parting gift of a two-thousand-dollar raise doesn’t help him much with his credit card bills, and Susan’s abrupt offer to double his salary puts him on a whole new path towards living a different kind of life and being a different kind of person.

Neither Susan nor Peter is particularly likeable, since Susan swoops into Peter’s life in the most aggressive manner and he doesn’t seem to care much about what’s happening to him. A supermarket setting is hardly the most thrilling backdrop for a movie, and it doesn’t help to enliven the film’s pace. Hearing about how Susan’s unique energy actually unites the team to work hard and achieve something is less than satisfying since we don’t actually get to see the fruits of their labor. The story remains too tightly focused on Susan and Peter without drawing enough on the larger picture.

Watching Susan and Peter fight to revitalize their ailing supermarket chain and truly accomplish something is mildly engaging, but not sustainable enough to hold viewers’ interest for an hour and a half. It’s undeniably fun to watch Posey play yet another nutty character detached from the reality of how others around her perceive her. It’s not her greatest performance, however, and it was more entertaining to see Mabius being enthusiastic on “Ugly Betty.” None of the supporting cast members stand out, through little fault of their own, and the script gives them sparing material. Unfortunately, this film just doesn’t register.


No comments: