Say It Isn't So (15)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner18/06/2001

1 star out of 5
Running time: 95 mins

Disastrously bad gross-out "comedy" that doesn’t deliver a single laugh – avoid like your life depended on it.

Say It Isn’t So is produced by the Farrelly Brothers – a fact that was loudly trumpeted by the posters for the movie, until it bombed in the States. Indeed, the most recent posters seem to indicate that even the brothers have disowned this truly awful movie, since their names now only appear in the small print at the bottom. Unfortunately for all concerned, this is thoroughly deserving of all the bad reviews it’s had so far, and if there’s any justice it will swiftly sink without trace here too.

Chris Klein (from American Pie) reprises his sub-Keanu-in-Bill & Ted-mode act as sweet-natured Gilly Noble, an orphan who works at an animal shelter and harbours hopes of one day finding a) true love and b) his real mother.

He thinks he’s found the former when he meets Jo Wingfield (Heather Graham), a definite contender for the World’s Worst Hairdresser Award. One disastrous haircut and an amputated ear later Gilly and Jo are head-over-heels in love. Unfortunately, no sooner have they consummated their relationship than they discover that Gilly is Jo’s long-lost brother, which puts something of a downer on the relationship, to say the least…

She’s not really his sister, of course. Even a comedy this bad wouldn’t dare do anything as subversive as that, and both the trailer and the poster go to great lengths to point this out, with the latter featuring a small photo of co-star Orlando Jones (not yet well-known in this country, but soon will be, after Evolution opens later this month) holding up a sign saying "She’s not REALLY his sister".

The rest of the movie, then, is given over to a mad cross-country scramble, with Gilly desperate to prevent Jo’s wedding to a rich scumbag before it’s too late.

To be absolutely fair, the actors do the best they can with such a lousy script. Klein and Graham make a sweet couple and there’s a certain amount of pleasure in seeing Sally Field play fiercely against type as Jo’s trailer-trash mother, Valdine Wingfield. However, this is one of those movies where if you’ve seen the trailer, you’ve already seen the best bits.

On this evidence, gross-out comedies are on the slippery slope to oblivion, with each successive film trying to out-do its predecessor, and the box office figures directly corresponding to the depths being plumbed – further proof of this tendency will be seen in the upcoming Freddy Got Fingered and Tomcats, both due out later this year.

This time round the "gags" include: Gilly unwittingly getting ‘oral pleasure’ from a cat, a girl with cow-bells attached to her (prosthetic) breasts, Jo’s paralysed father swearing via a Stephen Hawking-type voice box and Sally Field being Really Gross. And that’s it.

Essentially, then, the film just isn’t funny. There’s none of the underlying sweetness of There’s Something About Mary and the whole thing seems forced. Ultimately, this is best avoided and forgotten about – rent Dumb and Dumber instead.

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Content updated: 13/12/2017 20:41

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