Tooth (U)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner13/02/2004

Two out of Five stars
Running time: 91 mins

Toothless comedy that has a couple of nice ideas but suffers from a combination of a poorly thought-out plot, shoddy production values and an irritating lead actress.

Tooth is a rather dismal ‘holiday’ movie that, rather like the plot of the film itself, lacks that certain magic to make it fly. In addition, everything about it seems rushed – even the parade of celebrity cameos leaves the impression that each performer only gave them an afternoon each.

Irritating Newcomer

Irritating newcomer Yasmin Paige plays Tooth, a Tooth Fairy from a depressing subterranean fairyland called Fairytopia, in which magic has long ceased to exist and everything now runs on cold hard cash instead.

In order to get some of the old magic back, Tooth plays a prank that involves leaving a literal mountain of cash with a struggling family (Sally Phillips, Tim Dutton and the two kids: Rory Copus and Maisie Preston). Somehow this threatens Christmas (it’s never adequately explained how), so Tooth and the kids set off to find Mrs Claus to put everything right. However, Evil Fairy Hunter Harry Enfield is hot on their tail…

The main problem with Tooth is that the script hasn’t been properly thought-out. For example, it’s set in America (presumably with one hopelessly optimistic eye on the US box office), though clearly filmed in England – as a result, some of the actors attempt American accents, but others don’t.

The ‘countdown to Christmas’ also smacks of a cheap holiday movie ploy, which has backfired somewhat now that the film is coming out in mid-February. Similarly, the ‘rules’ of the Fairytopia universe are never really explained, though this does throw up some nice surreal touches, such as the fact that Tooth’s boss is played by a neurotic Jim Broadbent as a giant rabbit.

Some Amusing Cameos

Some of the cameos are amusing (Fry, Grant, Hall), others less so (Jones) and there are one or two tiny flashes or humour or invention, but ultimately it’s not enough to save the film.

Paige herself has to shoulder a large amount of the blame for this – it’s a shame they didn’t cast her geeky, bespectacled best friend as the heroine instead, as she would have been a lot more sympathetic.

In short, though not unwatchable, Tooth is only slightly more fun than a trip to the dentist, which is a shame, because there are the makings of a good idea here.

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Content updated: 18/04/2014 11:35

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