The Worst Ashton Kutcher Movie

I have seen the worst Ashton Kutcher movie tonight.  After suffering through Just Married on DVD 3 years ago, I didn’t think that was possible.  Incredibly, I was wrong.  The movie is My Boss’s Daughter, one of three bad films Kutcher appeared in in 2003.  (Just Married and the so-so remake of Cheaper By The Dozen were the others.) 
 
I usually try to be as patient as possible when I start watching a movie because you gotta give the filmmakers time to establish the characters and the story.  Some films grab you from the opening frame and never lose your interest while others need anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes to slowly reel you in.  Then, there are the films that have a dynamite opening but no follow through, and others where, after a slow start, momentum builds and the quality of the film improves remarkably. 
 
It took 90 seconds to hate My Boss’s Daughter.  That’s a new record.  It took me a whole 3 minutes to start despising Surviving Christmas which I screened on DVD last year.
 
Where do I begin with this monstrosity?  You’ve got Kutcher, who has yet to prove he can carry a film, playing an honest, passive guy (right) who works as a messenger for Midnight Owl Publishing.  He wants to work in the Creative Department (where there’s an opening) but is deathly afraid of his boss who is played by a completely miscast Terrence Stamp.  (More on him in a moment.)  Kutcher has some ideas for the company but after seeing Dave Foley getting fired after leaving Stamp’s office, his confidence plummets. 
 
While in Stamp’s office, a terrified Kutcher makes a face while drinking coffee and after sampling the bitter java himself Stamp ushers in the new receptionist (Molly Shannon), completely humiliates her by saying a retarded person would make a better cup of coffee and fires her.  Then, he asks Kutcher if he was a little hard on her.  (Didn’t he pay attention to the horrible vitriol coming out of his mouth?)
 
Stamp’s performance isn’t right for a comedy like this.  He’s far too ornery and rigid to make the lines he’s reciting funny (not that he’s been given anything to work with).  For almost the entire film he’s got a permanent scowl on his face and as I write this I can’t help but think he’d much rather forget ever appearing in this trash.
 
The title character of the film is played by the lovely Tara Reid who really isn’t a bad actress as those very funny American Pie movies proved, but like Kutcher she needs to steer clear of mediocre scripts forever.  They’re not doing either of their careers any good.  Because of a ridiculous incident on the subway in the first scene in the movie she thinks Kutcher is gay.  He’s not.  He’s secretly got a massive crush on her and when she asks him to come by her father’s place at night he readily agrees thinking he’s going to get to go to a party with her.  But because he is the stupidest man alive he’s "unknowingly" agreed to housesit her father’s place and look after his pet owl, OJ, who is too depressed to fly.  Besides, Reid is spoken for and would you believe Kenan Thompson (yes, Fat Albert) is her boyfriend?  I didn’t, either.
 
Stamp gives him explicit instructions:  No visitors.  When the alarm goes off, feed the mice to the owl and make sure he takes his medication with water.  But, of course, shortly after he leaves, Kutcher is startled when Stamp’s estranged son, Red (Andy Richter), enters the living room and engages in, what has to be, the most painful attempt at ha-ha sex talk I’ve ever heard. 
 
Later, other visitors appear like Molly Shannon who’s hoping to get her job back, Michael Madsen, who wonders why he was handed a package of flour instead of cocaine and Carmen Electra, one of Shannon’s pals, who thinks she may have breast cancer.  Surely, the beautiful Carmen deserves better than to be fondled by Ashton Kutcher.
 
The jokes in this movie aren’t even jokes, really.  They’re cries for help.  A series of completely unfunny (and implausible) events leads to the owl flying out of the house for the first time in years (wow, didn’t see that coming) and into the open, upstairs window of a neighbour’s house.  Kutcher witnesses this and tries to explain to the occupants what’s going on, but they are so completely brain-dead they think he’s some clown named Albert trying to squirrel his way out of a date with the cute girl who lives there and who just happens to have a massive head injury.  (That whole bit, and a later scene, are blatant rip-offs of Dana Carvey’s SNL character, Massive Head Wound Harry.) 
 
I could go on and on with the plot here – I haven’t even begun to cover all the moronic moments that happen – but why should you suffer as much as I did?  I’m truly amazed that this wasn’t nominated for Worst Picture at the Razzies and I’m also astounded it made money at the box office.  (According to the Internet Movie Database, this terrible would-be comedy made about 15 million dollars.  Its budget was 14 million.)
 
Now I haven’t seen all of Ashton Kutcher’s movies but I’ve seen enough to realize he’s lucky he still has a movie career at this point.  He’s much better off sticking with Television.  Hopefully, he was smart enough to have signed a decent residual deal with the producers of That 70’s Show.  Otherwise, when everybody finally realizes he’s not talented enough to stick with the cinema, there’ll be many lean days in his future.
 
What went wrong here?   Everything.
 
Dennis Earl
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Thursday, March 23, 2006
12:06 a.m.
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Published in: on March 23, 2006 at 12:09 am  Leave a Comment  

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