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After his last holiday-themed box-office smash Valentine's Day in 2010,
director Garry Marshall has carbon-copied the exact same formula for
his latest film New Year's Eve which uses its gigantic ensemble cast to
document various different relationships and states of emotions over
the course of a single day and night in New York City.
The story lines include: a couple awaiting the birth of their child, two people who become trapped together in an elevator and a gentleman who is trying to enjoy his last New Year's Eve on earth as he sadly lays on his deathbed.
Much like Valentine's Day, Marshall's latest film seems to forget the importance of character development and indeed sure-footed narrative; these films feel like the audience are watching Ashton Kutcher flirt with Lea Michele, or Zac Efron helping Michelle Pfeiffer, which in all honesty they are. Never are viewers able to break away from the celebrities portraying these supposed characters, which cause great issues when trying to build and present emotion.
The film also has some bizarre cast members, including the incredibly pointless Jon Bon Jovi who slinks about, and may as well be promoting a new Greatest Hits album when he enters the frame. Stars like Halle Berry and Robert De Niro are incredibly redundant here, even though they do benefit from moderate screen-time. Performers like De Niro are worthy of a solid script and something more important to do rather than just stand around holding a theoretical sign saying 'And Robert De Niro'.
Contrary to the opinion of the majority of critics (or males), 'Valentine's Day' was yes fluffy, gooey and forgettable two hours, but also entertaining. It did try very slightly to be different with a gay romance amongst other things and whilst this was all still "Hollywood", there were far worse movies released in 2010.
To be fair to 'New Year's Eve', it is not amongst the worst of the year. This might be due to the fact that most of the audience had or have extremely low expectations upon arrival. Expecting a film to be bad makes it all the less painful if the final product is indeed poor and consequently, makes it seem much better than it truly is if a viewer is not disappointed.
'New Year's Eve' felt mechanical and forced, a project merely designed for profit there is no love nor compassion, no credibility nor realism. This is rather a 118 minute tourist video about how wonderful The Big Apple is, and how beautiful the people who reside in it are. Throw in disgusting amounts of product placement and an old rock star, and hey, you've got a $100 million motion picture! Spend your £8 at the cinema this Christmas on a film that gives like 'Hugo' rather than this, and save the holiday romances for 'Love Actually' on DVD with the family or partner.
Verdict: It is better if Marshall does not attempt to make another movie about a commercial holiday again. If we see a trailer with Kutcher dressed as the Easter Bunny for love next year, run for your life.
For more The Upcoming reviews http://www.theupcoming.co.uk/category/culture/cinema/
The latest in a long line of vapid group ensemble romcoms quickly becoming popular in Hollywood Valentine's Day, He's Just Not That Into You, etc, etc is devoid of anything even remotely resembling quality movie-making or quality entertainment. It's a hodgepodge of inane mini stories, hammy acting, ridiculous moralising and ludicrous plotting all converging to produce a sickly sweet holiday flick that should be avoided by all. I'm not sure what's more disconcerting, that Valentine's Day was triumphant enough at the box office to warrant this semi-spin off or that some of the usually terrific actors present here Michelle Pfeiffer, Hilary Swank, Abigail Breslin, Halle Berry, Robert De Niro decided to sign on the dotted line for this junk. Give this puke-fest a miss or you may actually want to skip the real New Year's Eve this year.
The trouble with ensemble comedies - romantic or otherwise - is that
the audience is given little time to develop a relationship with any of
their characters. This is certainly the case with Garry Marshall's
seasonal effort New Years Eve, but the problems with the film are far
from done there.
Stuck somewhere between a 'Visit New York' advert and meandering rom-com, few of the movies plots are linked and many are only hastily so at the end of the movie, almost as an afterthought. The film is incredibly low on laughs of any variety and despite - or perhaps because of - its huge star cast it never feels like its going anywhere, much like the Times Square ball which gets as much screen time as anybody.
The characterisation is incredibly lazy; Ashton Kutcher plays a pyjama-wearing stoner cartoonist, Zac Efron is the plucky young go-getter, De Niro (who will sign up for anything these days) is the grumpy old coot. These typecasts are bad enough before Lea Michele appears essentially playing Rachel Berry from Glee, replete with the screeching vocal performances. The cherry on top of the cake, however, is Michelle Pfeiffer who re-enacts her performance in Batman Returns as kooky wallflower Selina Kyle; to my immense disappointment she never became Catwoman and proceeded to whip up any sense of excitement.
The one positive thing I could say about this film is that it isn't offensively bad, except I cant because three of the precious few non-white, non-American characters are horrendously bad racial stereotypes. I'll leave you to spot them should you have the misfortune of having to endure this vapid exercise in futility.
I don't think I understand people at all. I watched it despite all the bad reviews and I didn't regret it. I'm starting to think people are really bitter, it's a really sweet movie about new years and how people feel around that time of the year, it actually gave me a warm feeling, so yes, it's not a deep smart full of effects movie, but sometimes people need a movie like this, I'm all against unchallenging movies, but I don't think this was the case at all. It's the perfect new year movie, that gives you hope for the year to come and live everyday fully. The variety of characters is okay, as you get to know them enough to see a little bit of yourself in them or not,and it's really interesting to see what different people go through at that time of the year and how they feel and what they hope to change. It really is a warm,hopeful movie, at least that's the way I saw it.Sometimes we need to take a break and take a deep breath, that's the movie.
What? It's not a sequel to Valentine's Day?
Let's be honest here. There was absolutely NO reason to make this movie. Well, maybe one: money. During a viewing of this excruciatingly painful melo-dramedy, one will find absolutely no artistic value, underlying message, or actual creative backbone. This film is just an excuse to slap a couple of famous face in front of the same camera, within the same period of time. You know what that's called on the set of a good movie? Bad casting.
I can't believe someone made the same mistakes that were made just a year or two ago! When I first saw the poster, I thought "Is this a parody?". But then I saw who was directing this prick of a film.
Garry Marshall: Probably the single most desperate man in America. I am convinced that his last and final wish (let's be honest, he's not exactly in his twenties) is to meet as many famous people as he can; and what does that leave the helpless moviegoers with? The atrocities that were (and still are) Valentine's Day and New Years Eve.
Looking for a fun holiday film to put a spring in your step, and a sparkle in your smile? Then spend your ten bucks elsewhere, because this movie is not worth the dough.
The whole thing is a jumbled mess of popular actresses of today, and a few familiar faces that we all know. Then of course your Ashton Kutcher and your Jessica Biel who insist upon us that "Yes look, we're still famous! We promise!"
Well I don't need it. I don't need it, and I encourage everyone to stray far away from this badly written, far-fetched, soap cushion of a love story that sincerely wants to be literally everything that it's not. It's a drama for people who don't like dramas, a comedy for people who don't like comedies, and a romance for people who don't like romance. Not worth a second of your time.
I'm speculating that one of the reasons why New Year's Eve got pushed
up so early in the month is because come that time of the season
everyone will be out there merry making rather than to head to the
cinemas and probably revel in whatever festivities the welcoming of the
new year will bring, instead of watching something that failed to
capture the mood and spirit of leaving behind the old and being hopeful
for what the new year would hold. Yes, for all its celebratory mood
seen in the trailer, the actual product is nothing more than a really
boring affair culminating in the New York Times Square ball drop at the
stroke of midnight.
Garry Marshall continues from his festival theme film Valentine's Day with yet another ensemble that rounds up some of the hottest folks in Hollywood, playing caricatures in 8 short stories that you know will link up one way or another, either through characters or through events. There's Ingrid (Michelle Pfeiffer) the mousy secretary of a music executive (John Lithgow) who quit her job to fulfill her New Year's resolution with the help of a courier boy (Zac Efron). Then we have Robert De Niro as a patient on his death bed persuading his doctor (Cary Elwes) and his nurse (Halle Berry) to let him see the countdown from the rooftop of the hospital. Jessica Biel and Seth Meyers play a couple who are expecting their child, and are in competition with another couple played by Sarah Paulson and Til Schweiger to produce the first New Year's baby to walk away with 25 thousand, engaging the help of Carla Gugino's spiritual doctor.
Leaving the hospital and into the hottest party in town, there's food caterer Laura (Katherine Heigl) who has to contend with rock star Jensen (Jon Bon Jovi) who is trying his utmost to win her back after walking out on her a year ago, with tired comedy contributed by her chefs played by Sofia Vergara and Russell Peters. Jensen's backup singer Elise (Lea Michele) finds herself stuck in a lift with the indifferent Randy (Ashton Kutcher) while en route to the performance. Sarah Jessica Parker and Abigail Breslin play a protective mother and daughter pair where the latter is trying to seek permission to spend the night out with her friends. Hillary Swank plays the executive of the ball drop event which has hit a snag, with Ludicrous as her police confidante, and rounding it all up is Josh Duhamel as a music mogul apprehensive whether he'll meet the woman of his dreams once more.
And throw in a couple more big names from Ryan Seacrest to cameos like Matthew Broderick and even Michael Bloomberg himself against the backdrop of Times Square, and the stage's all set for one heck of a party, not. Most of the stories here, written by Katherine Fugate, seemed more like an exercise to pack as many characters as possible without digging deeper in to the emotions on why such a day on the calendar is such a big deal. While Valentine's Day may have it easier since any romantic tale will fit the bill, how do you do one for New Year's, and to do so successfully, and convincingly? If not for the bevy of stars, this film would have fallen flat on its face because there's nothing absolutely compelling in the stories that you'd root for anyone to succeed in fulfilling their objectives before the new year kicks in.
It's dull and uninspiring, with no real emotion on display despite the wealth of talent at its disposal. The one I really wanted to laugh out loud at, is that of the Josh Duhamel arc involving a guy pining for a woman whom he had described a magical meeting that got etched permanently in his mind. This served as the hook to engage until the end, but what an anti-climatic let down when the identity got revealed, because throughout the film every other female character was of a lot more positive in attitude that the final chosen one, and worse, seemed to be forced into it because her character arc was simply the most atrocious of the lot. I never understood her appeal, and when she appeared in the end to close the loop, I'd swear I'd rather shoot myself if that was something that can happen in real life.
New Year's Eve was a tad too long in dragging out its scenes so that each arc has about an equal amount of time without one upstaging another, but all in all this film has one purpose and one purpose only - to serve as product placement, in almost every shot you'd see a brand name sticking out. You'd get a lot more cheer in actually getting outside and making merry with strangers, than to be stuck in a cinema hall watching this depressingly bad film. Pick something else instead if you crave for ensemble films.
Incredible bad movie, maybe the worst I have ever seen. Full of stereotypes, without a story. Just a bunch of known actors thrown in the worst script that ever came to screen (this is why I was fooled). If half of those actors would be put in any other script, it certainly would be better than this communist story. There is absolutely nothing to watch. Predictable, lazy, without sense, no surprises, no logic, no idea, no sense again. No atmosphere, stupid subjects, and the worst predictable stereotypes, with every single occasion. Do not waste your time, I just did that and I am so sorry. To the producers: Why is this a comedy? Because you laugh at me for being so fool thinking that a movie with De Niro should be at least good? To the actors: Do not ever agree to work on such a movie again. I believed in your names to offer me a nice evening. Next time, I will think twice before trusting in you as professionals. I will wait for other's reviews, and only if it is satisfactory I will buy a ticket. Sorry for you because you have missed a opportunity to do something Artistic, to be Proffesisionals.
I rather enjoy the odd ensemble comedy such as this film, I somewhat
enjoyed Valentines Day and I really enjoyed He's Just Not That Into
You, but what those film had but this doesn't is a fewer amount of plot
lines. There's just too much going on in this film, far too many
characters, as soon as I found myself interested in one plot its
segment would end, you can never get really attached to one set of
For me the best storyline was the Michelle Pfieffer and Zefron plot, it was really the only one with a bit of substance, I actually think a full movie of that story would be great, also the Jessica Biel and Seth Meyers plot was rather funny thanks to the highly underrated Ms Biel. This movie is entertaining enough I suppose but it's also lacking any real great laugh out loud moments, the only time I laughed was when Jessica Biel was in labour, she could do some great comedy if given the chance.
Lea Michele manages to bring her great screen charisma to the big screen, she is very fun to watch and her rendition of Aude Lang Syne was lovely and a nice way to end the movie.
If this movie had about four or five less stories happening this movie would have been much better, it's not horrible by any standards but it's not excellent either, also this may sound mean but Sofia Vergara is possibly the most annoying actress alive, at least they didn't put a decent actress in the most annoying role in the film. I mean it's worth paying to see the excellent dance scene between Zefron and Pfieffer over the end credits.
OK, but basically it's exactly the same as Valentines Day but with more actors and a lot less substance.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I wanted to give this film 1 out of 10, but there was a single poignant
scene starring Halle Berry that provided the only depth of character in
the entire film.
Otherwise, this movie is a disaster. The storyline is obvious and pathetic, the characters are so weak that you don't feel any sympathy for their respective plights, and the film lacks any sense of being genuine.
I just wanted it to end, and spent much of the time rolling my eyes with disbelief that actors as strong as this ensemble cast had been presented with such dreadful dialogue and such weak characters.
This film made Valentine's Day look good (an incredible feat) and both films were clearly an attempt at an American version of Love Actually, which both utterly failed.
Don't waste 2 hours of your life on this drivel.
There were so many stars in this film that it felt like a Hollywood casting office. This film was a jumble of story lines that somehow crashes together in the end. I really like all the actors in the film, but the film itself lacked substance. I think that director Garry Marshall took it a little too far when he got Matthew Broderick to make a cameo appearance as Mr. Buellerton. Really, Garry? This film reminds me of the other slapped together film that Garry directed (Valentine's Day). What happened to the brilliance that Garry displayed in films like Pretty Women and Beaches? There were a lot of Oscar-winning actors in this film such as Hillary Swank (Claire Morgan), Robert De Niro (Stan Harris), Halle Berry (Nurse Aimee) and Michelle Pfeiffer (Ingrid). I know that these people did not need a paycheck, so why would they want to add this film to their resume? Ashton Kutcher (Randy) is a man who hates New Year's Eve (as we can tell from the trailer). I think he hates New Year's Eve because he read the script. And another thing . Why was Ashton wondering around New York City in his pajamas? I've been to New York City in the winter and this is not even close to being believable. I do have to make a comment about Sarah Jessica Parker's character, Kim. I can understand her having a teenage daughter, but what I cannot understand is the inappropriate love interest she ends up with. He is much too young for her (but who am I to talk smile). I love SJP from way back from her Sex In The City days, but come on!!! The only character that was slightly believable was Hailey (Abigail Breslin), who acted pretty much like a typical teenager. The rest of the story lines were just pure nonsense. Emma's daughter-in-law brought her baby to the film and he slept through the whole thing. I felt like I could have done the same thing. I hate to say it (not really) but the best parts of this film were the outtakes at the end of the movie. If you feel like you need to see this film, I recommend that you wait until it comes out on DVD and rent it. I am not celebrating and I refuse to do a count-down for this film and am giving it a red light.
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