Di Novi de­but a dread­ful dud

Rutherglen Reformer - - The Ticket -

I’m for­tu­nate enough to be very hap­pily mar­ried and have not been tar­geted for any bunny-boil­ing mad­ness from ex-girl­friends in the past.

But if I starred in a not-so-glossy Hol­ly­wood thriller, chances are I would have suf­fered from a few abu­sive phone calls, un­wel­come vis­its to my work­place and maybe even a gun­shot wound or two from a psy­chotic former part­ner by now.

The lat­est pre­dictable farce to take in­spi­ra­tion from pot-boil­ers like Fatal At­trac­tion and The Hand That Rocks the Cra­dle is the in­ap­pro­pri­ately named Un­for­get­table.

Kather­ine Heigl (Tessa Con­nover) plays the Glenn Close wannabe who ter­rorises Rosario Daw­son (Ju­lia Banks) when she mar­ries her ex-hus­band David (Ge­off Stults).

Un­for­get­table marks the di­rec­to­rial bow of Denise Di Novi – known for pro­duc­ing hits in­clud­ing Bat­man Re­turns, Ed­ward Scis­sorhands and Crazy, Stupid, Love – and it is as in­aus­pi­cious a de­but as you are ever likely to see.

Heigl and Daw­son’s big screen ca­reers have rather fallen off a cliff of late, with the pair do­ing their finest work on TV – Heigl in the past on Grey’s Anatomy and Daw­son cur­rently within Marvel’s Net­flix shows.

Sadly noth­ing they pro­duce here sug­gests an up­turn in their cin­e­matic for­tunes. Heigl seems to think play­ing crazed means stretch­ing your eyes wide and do­ing a lot of yelling while sport­ing per­fectly straight­ened hair and an ar­ray of ex­pen­sive-look­ing out­fits.

Daw­son, mean­while, looks dazed and con­fused as the put-upon vic­tim and the open­ing scene makes the fatal er­ror of sign­post­ing key plot de­vel­op­ments that could have de­liv­ered a shock or two later on.

It is one of sev­eral mis­takes found in the sloppy script by David Les­lie John­son (Or­phan, The Con­jur­ing 2) and Christina Hod­son, the lat­ter of whom also wrote last year’s dread­ful Shut In.

The pair turn their char­ac­ters into walk­ing clichés who make so many id­i­otic mis­takes you half ex­pect an an­nounce­ment to pop up on screen telling you this is a pub­lic ser­vice video on how not to live your life.

Not once but twice do peo­ple leave their phones com­pletely unat­tended in a pub­lic set­ting al­low­ing some­one – two guesses as to who – to come along and take ad­van­tage of the sit­u­a­tion. I mean, come on; our phones are prac­ti­cally glued to our hands and pock­ets these days.

Di Novi’s de­but limps along to­wards a ho-hum fi­nale that, at the very least, does see a few fists fly be­fore an un­likely end to Tessa’s ram­page and a fi­nal scene that – shud­der –would prob­a­bly have led to a hastily filmed se­quel back in the eight­ies.

Thank­fully, that is highly un­likely to hap­pen here – please, god! – as this trashy relic from a by­gone era will be wiped from your mind shortly af­ter leav­ing the cin­ema.

Fac­ing-of­fDaw­son and Heigl’s bit­ter feud turns phys­i­cal

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