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11 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Good fun; but could have been even better.

Author: John from United Kingdom
12 November 2005

Well, what can I say? I have watched this film several times on DVD and I think it's ace. Heavily stylised and camped-up, it maybe; a play (in parts) it might be; but it is funny and subtly ironic in many ways. Elaine Hendrix excels herself in this film as the blonde temptress/ hit-woman. The Cary Elwes character is a little irritating but necessary to the point of the plot. Mary Steenburgen (a great actress) is surprisingly sexy as the middle-aged vamp! It is a well acted and directed film which should make all but the most cynical and jaded laugh. Okay, the plot, in some ways, is a little simplistic but that's not the point of the film. It's a black comedy, okay? It doesn't have to be intricate, just funny. Hendrix did the best she could and pulled it off with great style. A good laugh.

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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Funny, yet lacking a crucial element.

Author: creepingktulu from United States
21 February 2005

Contrary to the idea of most others who have viewed this film, I found it to be absolutely hilarious. It is my belief, however, that this movie had one single problem with it that made it unappealing to the majority of movie-goers. The problem? THIS MOVIE SHOULD HAVE BEEN A PLAY. If this script would have been presented to an audience from a stage, it would have been much more accepted. Cary Elwes' acting is fantastic in this movie, but he is not acting for a movie, he is acting for a play. The character he is playing (Mac) is an easily conceivable character. The way that Elwes chooses to portray him, however, is not meant for the big screen. Coming from someone who has spent plenty of time in competitive drama, this movie should have been a play. It would have been absolutely perfect on the stage.

I suggest that anyone who watches this film looks at it from a non-traditional viewpoint. Imagine that you are watching a play, and the brilliant comedy in this movie will present itself to you.

Seven out of ten. This movie would have gotten a higher rating, but, as previously stated, the story and the characters were out of place on the big screen.

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5 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

straight to video

Author: ally_pace from London, England
18 July 2001

Hapless insurance investigator, 35 year old Mac (Elwes) has more to lose than just his virginity in this black comedy. When scheming older woman Sally (Steenberg) discovers that Mac has a $1million life insurance policy, she seduces him and cons him into signing it over to her. Once her plan is assured, she hires Melody (Hendrix), an assassin who specialises in bumping off unfaithful husbands. However, Sally doesn't bet on Melody falling in love with Mac...

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Very good for its type

Author: abitrowdy from Virginia, USA
26 August 2012

Okay, I'll admit 10 is a little high for this movie, but it has been unfairly panned by those who just don't like this kind of movie. As someone said in the review of a different movie, some people don't know the difference between a badly done movie and one they just don't like. This movie is not for everyone. It should only be watched by those that like dark (very dark, black even) humor. Outrageous characters with malice in their heart. If that is your cup of tea, then you may find this, as did I, very surprising and funny. It has top people in it playing it up to the hilt, as they should have. Cary Elwes, Christopher Lloyd, Elaine Hendrix, and Mary Steenburgen like I've never seen her before. Some have complained about Cary Elwes' acting in it. I thought he was priceless, playing a role very much against his usual type. The whole thing would not have been near as compelling had Cary Elwes not played it as he did. I found this movie very funny, but please note my warning at the beginning. This is for folks who enjoy plots wildly outrageous, their characters ridiculous, and their humor dark.

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2 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

I wish some people were dead after watching this

Author: MBunge from Waterloo, Iowa
22 December 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is the sort of movie that thinks Tourette's Syndrome is hilarious. It believes a bad toupee is the height of comedy. It expects people to laugh at profanity as though they've never heard such naughty words before. And it features Cary Elwes chewing so much scenery that he must have gotten an intestinal blockage. Wish You Were Dead is stupid, lazy and almost completely unfunny.

Melody (Elaine Hendrix) is a man-hating, chocoholic hit woman who is hired by wives to kill their cheating husbands. Mac (Cary Elwes) is a pathetic, socially inept virgin who works as an insurance claims adjuster. When Mac gets tricked by a Jerry Springeresque mother-daughter duo (Mary Steenbergen and Tanya Allen) into thinking he's knocked up the mother and then made her the beneficiary of Mac's million dollar life insurance policy, Melody is brought in to seal the deal by offing Mac. However, killer and victim fall in love and aided by Mac's foul mouthed degenerate of a co-worker (Christopher Lloyd), they hatch their own scheme to grab the money. Throw in an animal rights fanatic hairdresser (Gene Simmons), Mac's castrating bitch of a mother (Sally Kirkland), a pointless bikini wax and the first film appearance by Billy Ray Cyrus and that's Wish You Were Dead.

I never laughed once while watching this film. I didn't chuckle or snicker. I did smile once at a sight gag involving the remains of one of Melody's victims, but that was far outweighed by my otherwise constant and open mouthed astonishment at attempts at humor that would insult the wit and intelligence of a 7 year old. I mean, it's very, very difficult to make a consistently funny movie but it's not that hard to dredge up a at least a few crude, low brow jokes and sprinkle them throughout a script. For pete's sake, if nothing else you can pull a Milton Berle and just steal funny lines from other books or movies.

In place of actual comedy, this film offers up the labored, mannered, ridiculous-but-not-in-a-good-way performance of Elwes. His acting is sooooo much more over the top than anyone else in the cast it's as though Elwes is in his own separate film, much like Val Kilmer in Tombstone except this time it really sucks. And it's not like the other actors are hewing close to realism, but they are trying to play human beings while Elwes turns himself into a muppet.

Wish You Were Dead is terrible. Watch it at your own risk.

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1 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Save yourself from this train wreck of a movie.

Author: E.J. from Michigan
3 January 2004

Oh *lordy* this was bad. I'm sure they were aiming for funny, but all I could do was sit and watch this train wreck of a movie in sheer unbelieving horror. So many good actors, so much horrible overblown awfulness! The designers, director and cinematographer seem to have gone to every length possible to make everyone in this movie look as terrible as possible. Handled correctly, this could have been humorous, or made the characters accessable, but instead it has only made it more obvious what overblown unappealing parodies they all are. This should, I suspect, have been funny, but for me, it fell continuously, horribly flat. If you like any of the actors in this film, please stay far away from it. It will leave you questioning their, and your taste. I have the feeling that many people in this did this as a favor to somebody, and ended up feeling very very betrayed. I sure did.

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1 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

I wish I was after watching this.....

Author: adamjacobs from London, England
18 October 2004

I didn't really expect much from this and I was certainly not pleasantly surprised when it turned out to be absolute drivel and possibly the worst film I have ever seen. With a half decent cast, including Cary Elwes and Christopher Lloyd I thought that they may be able to lift the film out of the depths of despair. Alas, they failed.

A very silly plot, some very poor acting (what do you expect casting Billy Ray Cyrus??)and complete disregard for any of the characters certainly does make you 'wish that you WERE dead' after watching this painful experience. It would not be categorised as a comedy as its just simply not funny and far too silly to be a thriller so I am unsure what genre this would fall into. Additionally, after 45 mins, I had already counted around 20+ uses of the 'F' word which proved to be very unnecessary. Avoid!!!

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