"New Suit" is a contemporary update of the fairy tale "The Emperor's New Clothes." Set in present-day Hollywood, the story concerns a script which does not exist, but nonetheless draws praise and bids from the creative community. Written by
If you have not seen the film and are looking at the generally positive (if limited in number and possibly associated with the production) comments about "New Suit", you must be puzzled about why this independent film was not picked up for theatrical release.
A movie about a struggling screenwriter in Hollywood who sells a screenplay without having a real script! Sounds like "The Big Picture" and "Office Space" (but trust me - "New Suit is not nearly as funny). Also sounds like another of those situations where an actual screenwriter had so little real life experience that the only thing he could write about is the movie business.
So they take an old concept from "The Emperor's New Clothes", "As Young as You Feel", or "Being There" and change the setting to Hollywood; partly because it's the only world they know anything about, partly because it lends itself to super cheap production design, and partly because those in "the business" are subject to a conceit that those outside the business are just dying to see a detailed examination of Hollywood workplace dynamics. Kevin Taylor (Jordan Bridges), an aspiring screenwriter by night and a lowly assistant to a producer (Dan Hedaya in a good supporting performance) by day, invents a writer named Jordan Strawberry (a Baskin Robbins employee and the flavor Keith orders) and an unseen script titled "New Suit". His agent and sometimes girlfriend (Marisa Coughlan) cleverly parlays it into something everyone must have, with producers bidding millions for the rights to produce it. You have to suspend disbelief a little here but Coughlan's manipulations are pretty convincing.
Now if this is starting to sound like something with extremely limited viewer appeal I haven't mentioned the worst part. Just as things are getting fun and you begin to identify with the two schemers, Kevin changes his mind and confesses rather than take advantage of the situation. So instead of being able to get off on the situation and have some vicarious glee, the viewer is subjected to an extremely tired lecture on morality and personal integrity (as if anyone actually believed this story was anything more than a satirical fantasy). And they wonder why these things lose money.
A word about Marisa Coughlan, this is the third of her films I have seen ("Pumpkin" and "Teaching Mrs Tingle" were the others). All three were lousy films made watchable by her performances-"New Suit" was the best if only because it was her biggest part. Coughlan strikes me as a actress who brings 200% to the set each day and whose performance must be restrained by the director rather than motivated-a problem that directors wish they had to deal with all the time. Hopefully she will get work in some decent ventures soon because she more than deserving.
Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.
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