Sunday, March 9, 2008

The Nines! Good...good...good...oh. Out now. (******6/10)

Ryan Reynolds has saved some tragically bad movies from being...well...tragically bad. Most notably Van Wilder and Waiting, where his sense of comedic timing and his fantastic delivery elevate those two movies from the level of "awful" to the level of "not awful". Since then, Reynolds seems to be attempting to distance himself from the funny-guy roles, like Van Wilder, and he seems to be willing to take just about any movie that won't force him to smirk and say clever cute things to clever cute girls. The latest movie is called The Nines, and it is weird. Reynolds plays three different characters. One is a David Caruso-type actor who plays a cop on TV. Another is a writer for TV shows, and the third is a video game programmer. But still, somehow, all three characters are part of the same guy, and...well, you'll have to see the whole movie to understand. Melissa McCarthy also plays three characters, including herself. Hope Davis appears as three people, as does Elle Fanning, the younger sister of Dakota Fanning. Sometimes she's a mute little girl, sometimes she isn't...although imdb and don't have this listed, I'm convinced she was the little girl in the overalls in Kindergarten Cop.

This movie really does keep you guessing right up until the end, but it's the end that sinks it. It won't make you feel cheated, like the end of Perfect Stranger (which I just finished watching and which made me very angry, so I thought I'd mention it), but it certainly isn't the big bang you would hope for and expect from a movie this complex and layered. There are some great moments in the film. When the Caruso-cop character has a Robert Downey type meltdown, tries to buy crack, hires a hooker to show him how to use crack, and then starts imagining his other personalities, it's hilarious and a lot of fun. Another scene where the TV writer attacks his network executive, it is also a lot of fun. Hope Davis is good, although she keeps playing a woman who is supposed to be incredibly hot. And while she is certainly attractive, she is an eight, not a ten. Melissa McCarthy (Gilmore Girls) is terrific as a woman who figures in Reynolds' life in the biggest possible way in each of the three scenarios.

The Nines is well worth your while if you are into the supernatural side of life and you don't mind a fairly boring ending. Or, if you are desperated to find out what happened to the little girl in the overalls from Kindergarten Cop. Otherwise, it's just kinda neat for a while.


  1. The little girl in the overalls from Kindergarten Cop is like 20 something now, it's an old movie. Elle wasn't in it.

  2. The overlapping storyline of the Nines resolves itself nicely at the end... and although Reynolds is a versatile, it was Melissa McCarthy who did a particularly great job of adding color to the whole thing.