Thursday, September 07, 2006

YOU, ME & DUPREE: Like a Sitcom Caper

Cast Owen Wilson, Kate Hudson, Matt Dillon and Michael Douglas
Director: Anthony and Joe Russo
Time: 100 mins
Rating: * * 1/2 (out of 4)
Kate Hudson and Matt Dillon
WHAT’S IT ABOUT? After the success of Wedding Crashers, Owen Wilson is back as Randolf Dupree, a slob and Best Man to Carl Peterson (Matt Dillon) at his wedding to Molly Thompson (Kate Hudson) in Hawaii. Dupree is supposed to be back at work in the mainland when the couple return from their honeymoon. Instead, Carl finds him roughing it out at the local pub. Dupree lost his job, his car and apartment after being fired for going AWOL to attend Carl’s wedding.
Feeling guilty about his best friend, Carl invites Dupree to stay at his place, consoling Molly that it is “only for a couple of days”. The “couple of days” turns to weeks, and worse, Dupree makes a mess of the house and almost destroys it. Carl’s marriage flounders and as a result, Dupree gets kicked out. Here, we are supposed to say ‘good riddance to bad buddy’ but something happens and the plot takes a weird turn that seems totally out of synch with what has happened before. And before we know it, Dupree goes from intolerable slob to marriage saviour!

WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL: You, Me And Dupree is not a sequel to Wedding Crashers but it should serve as one for those who could not get enough of watching Owen Wilson crashing into weddings and newlywed households. In Wedding Crashers, Wilson and Vince Vaughn play two buddies who gatecrash weddings for free food and free sex. Somehow, the movie grossed a whopping US$200 million (RM760 mil) last summer and boosted Wilson’s career playing the fun-loving cad who has problems growing up as a man.

HIGHLIGHTS: Wilson provides the usual ‘man-child’ antics as ‘marriage-crasher’ and these can be both funny and painful. You may get a few laughs here. There is some sort of a three-act play at work here and each look alien to the others. I cannot fault any of the cast for their performance, given such a roller-coaster of a script (by Mike Le Sieur). Hudson, for one, look ravishing as the cool-headed Molly, and Wilson is at his best when his character is at his worst. Why, there is even a librarian called Mandy who becomes Dupree’s love interest but never shows her face onscreen.

LOWLIGHTS: There is a subplot about Molly’s meddling father (Michael Douglas) and how he dislikes Carl and wants him to get a vasectomy! Again, this does not make sense, given his protests about how the old man loves his daughter Molly. Indeed, most of the characters here suffer from identity crises and do crazy things. Like, one minute, we see Dupree as a clumsy klutz and a good-for-nothing bore and next, he is reading Menza magazines, writing poetry and cooking European cuisine. Carl, on the other hand, starts off as a caring friend but turns into a jealous and villainous freak.

THE LOWDOWN: There are only a few laughs to be had in this scattershot comedy. And this is the main problem with You, Me And Dupree.


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