OK, I know my next blogs are supposed to be some stories about the Fourth of July party, but I can’t help myself on this one.
I watched the movie "New in Town" last night and have so many complaints about it that the dumb accent thing my co-worker Julie wrote about a few weeks back is the least of it.
This same story has been written a million times:
"Hoity toity city slicker ends up in a small town against his or her wishes and gets schooled about real life, falls in love, leaves and misses said small town, so goes back and saves the day. And gets to keep the love of his or her life."
"Doc Hollywood" comes to mind. As do several others.
But here’s the problem with this one. It’s supposedly set in New Ulm, but whoever wrote it didn’t realize that Minnesota is bigger than a breadbox and filled with people who have brains.
In one scene, idiot city slicker Renee Zellwhatever takes love interest Harry Connick Jr.’s daughter to the Twin Cities on a quick trip to go from total tomboy kid to total sex kitten. You know, just a quick jaunt from New Ulm to downtown Minneapolis and back after Harry buys his daughter a crappy dress the afternoon of the big date. Renee saves the day and the daughter’s bad hairdo by road tripping her to a hoity toity Twin Cities spot and buying her a pair of high heels, a dress and a haircut. The hockey-playing smart aleck then becomes a beautiful swan.
In the next scene, after the 13-year-old hottie leaves and Harry threatens her 14-year-old date, Harry tells Renee he moved his family to Minnesota to be close to the Mayo Clinic which is ‘just a few minutes away from here’ because his wife had a heart disease. New Ulm…Rochester. Just a few minutes away.
When did Minnesota become the size of a postage stamp?
Now, you also have to ignore the fact that they make New Ulm look more like Whoville than the interesting, historic, savvy town that it really is. In one scene, all the townspeople gather together and sing a Christmas carol around the town tree. They should have been belting out "Ba-who Do-ray" instead of "Oh Come All Ye Faithful" when the hoity toity city gal’s heart grew three sizes that day. If she had a dog named Max with an antler tied to his head by her side, she could have carved the roast beast later.
The movie made the town of New Ulm look smaller than that creepy town from "Deliverance",with a couple of seedy-looking businesses on Main Street and waitresses from heck, but also threw in the typical "It’s so cold" jokes. Slipping on ice, driving in bad weather, wearing inappropriate clothes…yawn. There was even a "cold nipples" scene.
And the hoity toity business woman from Miami, Fla., who got put in charge of the "small town" production plant showed up in a tight skirt and stilleto heels on her first day, predictably got her heels caught on grates during her speech to the workers, but later told Harry that she grew up visiting her dad in a plant where he worked as a janitor. Like she didn’t know there would be grates and stuff in a production plant?
All the men in the town had scruffy beards and all the women belonged to a scrapbooking club where they discussed finding men for the single women and secret tapioca pudding recipes. Seriously, tapioca saves the day.
Sorry, but I have too much respect for the sophistication of a small town to find this movie anything more than dumb and slightly insulting. And even with a tried and true story line, they manage to screw it up and make it predictable, sketchy and boring. One character, who truly doesn’t ever get developed, delivers a couple great one-liners, but that is the most this movie has to offer.
And the real crime is that Harry doesn’t sing a single note throughout the whole thing.