Friday, October 10, 2008
Baby Mama **
Director: Michael McCullers
Cast: Tina Fey, Amy Poehler
Greg Kinnear, Dax Shepard, Romany Malco, Holland Taylor
Sigourney Weaver, Steve Martin
Kate (Fey) is a successful, single businesswoman who's desperate to have a child. She discovers she has a "one in a million" chance of getting pregnant and decides to try surrogacy. After going to an agency (owned by Weaver's hilarious fifty something fertility goddess) she hires Angie (Poehler), an annoying, immature hick who moves in with her until the baby is born.
One part buddy film, one part chick flick and all parts entertaining, this is one of those simple minded (but not stupid) comedies that doesn't try to be anything else than "fun".
Poehler and Fey form one of the most brilliant comedic teams out there. They have the sort of balanced chemistry that proves healthy so that you don't get too much of Fey's mopey bittersweetness or Poehler's absent mindedness.
Supporting turns by Malco as a wise doorman, Kinnear as Fey's love interest and Martin as a New Age-y mogul are all wonderful.
But once the film is over you realize it's almost too nice, even if it takes some unexpected turns and its kind of sweet mannered comedy isn't really memorable.
"Baby Mama" lies at a weird place where it isn't sappy enough to be deemed as just corny or hard enough to become bold.
While it's very funny, its jokes are so subtle that they come at the expense of memories. This might be mostly because the film isn't written by Fey, who truth be told writes herself the best things out there (which justifies her female Woody Allen comparisons) and here becomes object to another writer's idea of what her girl next door charm is all about.
Her performance is great as usual, but sometimes it's as if she, and we, know that films aren't where her best work is being delivered.