'Bewitched' Offers Tricks and Treats

June 24, 2005 -- -- Now in theaters: "Bewitched," "The Perfect Man" and "Herbie: Fully Loaded."


Don't mistake this for a movie about a classic TV show. It's too smart for that. This is a movie about Will Ferrell as a washed-up actor, whose last chance before he has to get a real job is to play Darren on the new "Bewitched."

Ferrell wants all the laughs, so he casts an unknown to play Samantha, and, yep, Nicole Kidman is a real witch. She can put a spell on you.

Ferrell is on a roll, and all the inside Hollywood stuff is perfect. But "Bewitched" is haunted by its own premise. The tricks outdo the treats, which include Michael Caine as Samantha's warlock dad, who keeps showing up on boxes in the frozen food section as she strolls through the market.

What we can't figure out is why this Samantha loves the new, egomaniacal Darren. She's too good for him. Her mom, Shirley MacLaine, is right. Grade: B-

The Perfect Man

Even though it's just before daughter Hilary Duff's junior prom, Heather Locklear pulls up stakes and moves from Wichita, Kan., to Brooklyn, N.Y. She moves to a new state every time she breaks up with a guy. She's done it dozens of times. That's a bad mother, and a bad movie.

In "The Perfect Man," Duff invents a new boyfriend for mom, based on her new best friend's Uncle Ben. The imaginary beau leaves flowers and sends e-mails.

Here's where this film jumps the shark: Locklear thinks she's e-mailing her secret admirer. She's actually e-mailing her daughter. What parent would want their teenaged child to learn something like this? Grade: D

Herbie: Fully Loaded

This is a Volkswagen comedy for kids. Herbie blinks, winks, spins, spits, even falls in love. Why doesn't Lindsay Lohan or anybody else in the movie find this, well, unusual?

Come on, if you came across a car that could think and feel like a Beatle (instead of a beetle) would you smash him with a tire iron, like Matt Dillon does? Rated G for good enough. Kids will like it. Grown-ups, however, will find themselves making a lot of pit stops.Grade: C

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