Near the Texas-Mexico border, Wendell Baker has a few things going for him: his genial nature and optimism and the love of Doreen. His troubles? He dances around telling her that he loves her, and his idea of work is illegal. He's arrested, imprisoned, and she puts him behind her when she realizes that even prison is just a good excuse for him to play football with the guys. When he is paroled, it's to a job in the "hotel industry" at a board and care home for seniors, where the head nurse is running a scam. Three of the residents respond to Wendell's good heart. Can they expose the scam and help Wendell win back Doreen? Written by
Wendall Baker's dog, Junior, is played by Brother, Luke Wilson's dog. On the DVD commentary Wilson claims that no one thought Brother was up to the part but that he always believed Brother could do it. See more »
[Neil is spoofing Wendell Baker in front of McTeague]
"Thank you very much for this job. It's my first job in the hotel buisness
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I love the Wilsons as much or more than anyone, but it doesn't look like any of them tried too hard on this film to make it work. I just saw the world premiere at the Paramount and the crowd was wild for it. I on the other hand, along with all of my friends thought that the movie lacked a lot of what critics call believability.
The characters weren't quite paper thin, more like cardboard, and there were about 20 of them. Every time Wendell's charm wained immediately another character would show up to make him look all the better. Every time Wendell had a problem another character would show up to help him. Sometimes characters just showed up for the hell of it.
It was a fun movie, I laughed a lot, especially at Will Ferel's bit role. Austin, my city of residence, is also the backdrop which makes everyone feel nice. It seems though that the Wilson brothers were a little too proud of Austin, TX. At one point near the beginning Texas is mentioned, then he turns the corner in his car to show a TX license plate, then another shot as he drives into the distance and a huge Texas flag flutters above.
I don't want it to sound like I hated it, but I really wished for more. Luke didn't seem to work out everything quite as well as he could have, he even threw in some random voice over to help the plot hobble along. If you are looking for a fun movie that should have maybe starred Burt Reynolds circa 1972 then this is your movie, if you are looking for a tightly formed narrative then look elsewhere.
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