“10” DVD, Blu-ray Movie Review

2/10/2011 Posted by Admin


DVD, Blu-ray Movie Review

By our guest blogger, Matthew Schimkowitz

Can a mid-life crisis be fun? Educational? Sexy? Well, in Blake Edwards’ comedy, “10,” just out on Blu-ray disc, the director answers the question with a resounding, “No.”

Mired by a pretentious script and some sloppy editing, “10” goes through a bit of a mid-life crisis itself, indulging in some bad psychology and crotchety characters. Edwards takes all of Woody Allen’s worst characteristics -- and none of the charm -- and infuses them into a boring story about unlikable guy.

Dudley Moore stars as George Webber, a composer and pianist who undergoes a mid-life crisis on his 42nd birthday. Unable to pull himself out of this rut, Webber turns to drinking and womanizing, which sours his relationship with his singer girlfriend, the intelligent Samantha Taylor (Julie Andrews). So to fix his tattered life, Webber overcompensates and begins chasing a 23-year-old version of Andrews named Janey Hanley (Bo Derek).

Webber’s search for Hanley leaves him physically broken, as he faces dentists, police officers, bees, and gravity to reach her. Eventually, he finds himself in Mexico, where all of his supposed dreams are about to come true.

However, George Webber is better off alone. Moore spends the film complaining about a world that’s past him by, but he makes no effort to understand it. This stubbornness and verbose pretense make him so obnoxious. His overly intellectual demeanor and frumpy physique may resemble Woody Allen, but where as Allen’s issues and insecurities warrant our sympathies, Webber’s do not. For a rich composer dating the beautiful Julie Andrews, he comes off like a spoiled brat.

Because we’re unable to side with Webber, it’s difficult to engage with Edwards’ lengthy narrative. The director amplifies this problem with needlessly long takes and awkward cuts. By the time Webber actually reaches act two, 45-minutes into the film, you’ll wonder why it took him so long to get there, and how little we’ve actually learned.

“10”’s bland structure wouldn’t seem so taxing had the material been stronger. Moore and Andrews argue endlessly without punchlines or economy. Instead, scenes drag, jokes repeat, and Moore stumbles up a hill. Moore, Andrews and Derek have chemistry and give solid performances -- it's the script that fails them.

Most remember “10” for the image of Bo Derek running across a Mexican beach, her hair beaded, and waves crashing behind her. It’s an image that hangs in dorm rooms around the world, and it’s infinitely more interesting than any of the two-hours you’ll spend with George Webber. She and the cast are a 10. 

Unfortunately, the film is more of a six.

Grade: D

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