cranky home
Reviews since 1993:   A-E     F-N      O-Z    Posters       Who We Are and Why We Do What We Do         Search the Site

Your Donations support the Site

amazon.gif
Top Selling DVD     Books

BLU-RAY DVDs:
50 Shades of Grey
Exodus Gods and Kings
Grand Budapest Hotel
Imitation Game, The
Into the Woods

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
Robocop
Selma
Theory of Everything
Ride Along
We're the Millers
The Great Gatsby
Akira
Avatar
The Avengers
Amazing Spider-Man
Girl w/ Dragon Tattoo
Dark Knight Trilogy
World War Z
Happy Feet 2
Iton Man 3 combo
Batman Begins
Dark Knight
Fifth Element
The Hangover
Hunger Games
James Bond 11 disc coll.
Lord of the Rings trilogy
Mission Impossible GP
Sherlock Holmes AGOS
Singing in the Rain
Snow White Huntsman
Star Trek Into Darkness combo
Star Wars Saga
21 Jump Street
Ultimate Matrix coll
X-Men First Class
X-Men Trilogy
X-Men Wolverine

 BLU-Ray for Family DVDs 
Alice in Wonderland (2010)
Bambi
A Bug's Life
Cars
Chronicles of Narnia set
Coraline
Ghostbusters
Harry Potter 1-8 collection
Iron Man 2 combo
Kung Fu Panda
Lord of the Rings Trilogy Pinocchio
Pirates of Caribbean trilogy
Pixar short films
Ratatouille
Rio
Shrek the Whole Story
Sleeping Beauty
The Smurfs
combo
Snow White & 7 Dwarfs
Star Trek motion pictures set
Star Trek TNG Season One
Star Wars Saga (1-6)
Toy Story combo
Toy Story 2 combo
Toy Story 3 combo
Wall-E SE

OFCS

Search engine by FreeFind
Click to add search to YOUR web site!
click to search site

 DISNEY PIXAR DVDs
Alice in Wonderland
Bambi
Beauty and the Beast
Bolt
Cinderella
Coraline
E.T.
Kung Fu Panda
The Lion King
Mary Poppins 45th LE
Pinocchio
Princess Mononoke
Ratatouille
Rio 
Shrek the Whole Story
Simpsons Movie
Spider-Man Trilogy
Spirited Away
Star Trek movies set
Star Trek TOS (TV)
ST:TNG complete tv set
Star Wars Trilogy (1-3)
Star Wars Trilogy (4-6)
Toy Story DVD combo
Toy Story 2 DVD combo
Toy Story 3 DVD combo
Wallace and Gromit
Wall-E SE

Buy Movie collectibles
TV/Movie Collectibles

movie review query engine

NY film critics online

Privacy Policy


Click for full sized poster

Win a Date with Tad Hamilton

Starring Kate Bosworth, Topher Grace, Josh Duhamel, Nathan Lane, Sean Hayes, Gary Cole, Ginnifer Goodwin, Kathryn Hahn
Written by Victor Levin
Directed by Robert Luketic
website: www.winadatewithtadhamilton.com

IN SHORT: Only for teengirls. [Rated PG-13 for Sexual Content, Some Drug References and Language. 95 minutes]

A couple of weeks ago we greatly angered our beloved niece, now thirteen, by saying bad things about Mandy Moore movies, the not-screened-for-the-press Chasing Liberty in particular. Now, for her enjoyment -- if her parents don't object to a couple of make-out scenes of an intensity that Ms. Moore would probably never agree to do -- comes Win A Date With Tad Hamilton, with a more competent actress in the starring role. WADWTH is, otherwise, a film of interest only to budding teens though it does throw in Nathan Lane, much funnier than his material, and teevee star Sean Hayes, striving hard not to do a repeat of his Will and Grace character, for us grownups. We'll come back to them later.

On one of those really dark roads that ring LA, movie superstar Tad Hamilton (Josh Duhamel) is busy drinking and driving and smoking and groping some generic supermodel type, all the while unaware of the National Enquirer paparazzi cameras recording his every gulp and swerve and suck and squeeze. When you-know-what hits the fan of the front page, his ace backup team of manager Richard Levy (Hayes) and agent Richard Levy (Lane) -- that's not a typo, it's a weak joke in the script -- springs into action to control the damage to the star's Middle-of-the-Road All-American image. That means a contest awarding a trip to LA and a date with the superstar. The winner is, all together now, as opposite to Hamilton as opposite can be. She's Rosalee Futch (Kate Bosworth), as fresh scrubbed as you can in a 22-ish boxer-check out girl at the local Piggly Wiggly in Frazier's Bottom, West Virginia. Rosalee also happens to be the unrequited love of Piggly Wiggly manager Peter Monash (Topher Grace) who is left to fume as the object of his desire jets off to LA for her Ultimate Date. Pete does insist that Rosalee to "guard her carnal treasure" which is about as close to revealing that, uh, adults know. Kidlets into the makeout stage of life figure "it" out though it's placement in the script is as out of place as you can get. We have family in West Virginia. Being country grown doesn't make you talk in bad metaphors but it may give you a femme friend like Cathy (Ginnifer Goodwin) who can quote Bad Romance Novels verbatim but that's mere comic relief.

Said date goes by in a blur which is a good thing since it's only relevance to the real story is that, upon her return to hometown Frazier's Bottom, Peter is motivated to voice his previously unvoiced adoration. Wouldn't you know it, at the very moment his knee starts to flex, a Like-struck Movie Star ruins The Moment.

Tad Hamilton has no unexpressed ulterior motive. He was, he says, so taken with Ro's goodness and naturalness that he wants to know more of life in the real country West of Virginny so he can shake off his LA phoniness and rediscover his humanity. This will hopefully lead to bigger movies, including one off camera potential starrer by a director named Jimmy Eng (?) that's a plot point in the making. In the meantime, Hamilton has oodles of dialog he can pick from for great seduction lines -- Ro's a fan and isn't fooled by 'em, and our brainpans were working overtime to try and recall which film(s) in the last few years did the exact same shtick. We toss the question to the floor as Win A Date With Tad Hamilton becomes as much about Pete's desperate attempt to win Ro's attention as it is her reaction to being courted by a real life movie star. The film tries its best to generate one comic explosion after another but only manages a few. Perhaps Ro's father (Gary Cole) puts it best when he tells Pete, that he blew twenty years of opportunity. Pete shouldn't worry. The local barkeep (Kathryn Hahn) is more than willing to step into the love gap. You'll figure that route from the lady's introduction. All the subplots are stock bits, all strung out by the rule book and all saved by the decision not to take the expected directions.

As implausible as the main story may sound, it isn't impossible. Nobodies in the entertainment business occasionally hook into the inner circle -- we managed it twice and we're about as nobody as you can get (and, no, we're not telling). Win A Date With Tad Hamilton managed to hit each obvious plot point in a manner off-kilter enough to keep us conscious. The young stars are akin to cardboard cut outs. All screen excitement comes from Nathan Lane and Topher Grace. Sean Hayes is doomed by the broad strokes of Will and Grace. There's little in his actor's utility belt to give him more comedic material to work with. His written role is one of the few times that the film should've just said "Yeah, do Jack" and left us to familiar shtick.

But, he, we're an old fart. The interesting elements of this movie are not the main romance attempting to play out on screen but the superior supporting cast.

On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Ten Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to Win a Date with Tad Hamilton, he would have paid . . .

$3.00

Rent. Parental units be advised, see we see too many lugging dingle digits into screenings like this one, that the PG-13 is well earned. If you haven't had "the talk" with your kids and/or want to believe that they haven't entered the heavy makeout stage and should stay that way, this isn't a film for you to approve of.

Then again, teens are always more grown up than us old folk want to believe.

Click Here!
Lord of the Rings merchandise - LOTRshop.com

The Cranky Critic website is Copyright © 1995  -  2017  by Chuck Schwartz. Articles by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of,©, ®, their respective studios and are used by permission. All Rights Reserved. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy Award(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.