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Hollywood send-up. No-name actors are making a low-budget period drama called "Home for Purim," when an anonymous post on the Internet suggests that one performance is Oscar-worthy. Then, two more cast members get Oscar-related press: buzz in "Variety" and appearances on TV prompt the studio executives to insist on changes in the script in anticipation of a blockbuster. Jump ahead a few months to the days before Oscar nominees are announced: just the possibility of a nomination has changed the actors' lives. Agents, publicists, make-up artists, local celebrity reporters, and other bit players round out the backstage ensemble. Hooray for Hollywood! Written by
In a bit of life imitating art, Catherine O'Hara received a large amount of Oscar buzz for her performance in this movie. She was nominated for and won several precursor awards, and many awards experts predicted she would receive an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Like her character in the movie, O'Hara failed to be nominated. See more »
Though most likely a part of the absurdity of the film, Oscar nominations are neither announced, nor chosen, prior to a film's release, much less its completion. See more »
Lights. Camera. Satire! Such is the mantra of actor/director Christopher Guest's latest film, For Your Consideration, a parody of pretentious Hollywood ceremonies and the actors that suck up to them. With award season upon us, it would seem to be a very appropriate time for the release of such a film, and in fact, it is if only the film were good. Rather, the formerly hilarious Guest provides us with an interesting premise and not much comedy to back it up only a myriad of underdeveloped and overly annoying characters.
Washed-up and nearly forgotten, Marilyn Hack (Catherine O'Hara) strives to gain recognition as a serious actress, barely surviving on mere crumbs of ambition. When she hears rumors of a possible Academy Award nomination for her role in the nauseatingly sentimental Home For Purim, she becomes obsessed with fantasies of fame and praise. As rumors of nomination begin to surround the rest of the cast, rivalry and obsession dominate the set, inflating the egos of the previously unemployed actors.
Since his 1996 film, Waiting for Guffman, many of Guest's films have achieved "cult classic" status and have been deservingly hailed as innovative comic gems by audiences and critics alike. His most popular films, Best in Show, A Mighty Wind, and the aforementioned Waiting for Guffman, all share a common bond they are "mockumentaries". Primarily dependent on the improvisation of their veteran actors, Guest's films are hilarious and often bizarre doses of comedy, thick with wit and absurdity. For Your Consideration, however, is not a "mockmentary," a simple descriptor that may be the cause of its failure. Substituting mere pity chuckles for full-bellied laughter, the film wastes the talent of its cast, providing them with a dull and dry script, and allowing no room for the celebrated ad-libbing that made Guest's previous films so successful. With talent such as O'Hara, Harry Shearer, Eugene Levy, Parker Posey, Fred Willard, Jennifer Coolidge, Ed Begley Jr., Ricky Gervais, and Guest himself, a film as chronically unfunny as this one is an absolute disgrace.
While the film successfully parodies "infotainment" television programming, the fickle entertainment industry, plastic surgery trends, and standard award season maudlin trash, it doesn't do so with any originality or inspiration. It seems as if even the cast were bored making this film. The performances are good, especially on behalf of the charming O'Hara, but are ultimately forgettable. Let's hope Guest either quits or finds a way to redeem himself, but regardless, one thing is for sure: there will certainly be no "consideration" for Guest this time around.
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