Now in theaters: "Guess Who" and "Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous."
A nervous Ashton Kutcher and his girlfriend are ready to meet the parents. Hmm, there's a good title in there. But "Meet the Parents" had 100 laughs. "Guess Who" has three. Here's one:
"Did you tell them I'm not black?" Kutcher asks his gal.
"You're not?" she says. "Stop the car!"
"Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" is the template for this film. Back in 1967, Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn play a white couple whose attitudes are challenged when their daughter brings home a black fiancé.
In this, Bernie Mac is the overprotective dad who's a bit of a bully and Kutcher is the would-be son-in-law who isn't what dad would want.
Right off the top, Zoe Saldana is a fine actress, and could be a star. She and Bernie Mac, as husband and wife, have one lovely scene together, a dramatic scene. The director, Kevin Rodney Sullivan, has made some very good films -- none of them funny, a record he does not break.
When Aston Kutcher puts on his girlfriend's lingerie, who do we think is going to walk through the door? Lo and behold, his girlfriend's father -- not funny.
When Kutcher says, "Looks like rain," and Mac insists it won't rain, guess what falls from the sky? Not funny.
Mac doesn't want Kutcher sleeping with his daughter while they're in his house. To make sure, he forces Kutcher to sleep in bed with him. Not funny the first time, and no funnier the second time they're in bed together.
Kutcher lies about having been a NASCAR driver, for no reason at all other than to set up a Go-Kart race. Hollywood's been turning out funny car chases for 100 years. These guys don't even try for a joke.
The only thing I can think -- Ashton Kutcher was punk'd. Somebody put film in the camera and didn't tell him. Now, everybody knows he can't carry a movie. The only person I can think of I could recommend this movie to: Ben Affleck. He'll love it. It gets him off the hook for "Gigli" and "Jersey Girl."
Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous
Just when spring seems like it might finally be here, I'm rooting for winter to come back. Why? Because the movies that get released this time of year stink.
The original "Miss Congeniality" was OK, and I like Sandra Bullock, but this follow-up fails the Joel Siegel sequel test. If this had been the original, would they make a sequel of it? What is it about "no" that you don't understand?
Bullock is back as FBI Agent Gracie Hart in "Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous." Having become a beauty queen in the first film, she's now too famous to work undercover. She ends up boosting the bureau's image on TV shows like Regis Philbin's.
When Miss United States, her best friend, gets kidnapped, along with William Shatner, who is hysterical reprising his role as the pageant's host, Bullock takes it personally and she's back on the job.
The kidnapping, however, makes no sense. There's no attempt to collect a ransom, and the Las Vegas set pieces are not funny.
To get to a dressing room and question a suspect, Bullock and her new partner, played by Regina King, disguise themselves as men competing in a transvestite talent show. But wouldn't a flash of their FBI badges do the same thing a lot less painfully?