The Sweetest Thing (review)
I swore after Tomcats that I would never review another gross-out “comedy” again, so I feel I have to justify myself here by saying that I had no idea that The Sweetest Thing was going to be Tomcats for girls. I managed to complete miss any trailers or TV ads for the movie, so all I was left to go on was the screening invitation, which featured a scantily clad but cutesy Cameron Diaz holding an enormous book called True Love: The Ten Commandments. By this I was egregiously misled into believing this would be the usual inane crap.
Turns out this is far from your run-of-the-mill crap.
The press kit I was given at the screening had a tagline on it that ran: “A romantic comedy without the sugar.” And for a brief, glorious, shining moment, a tiny, hopeful, unrealistic part of my brain dared to conceive that this might mean I would be enjoying a smart, unsappy movie about realistic romantic entanglements.
It’s okay. Go ahead and laugh at me. I’m laughing at myself.
It’s a rare thing that I’m not cynical enough. While my shriveled optimism lobe was thinking its optimistic little thoughts, the rest of my head was telling me that “without the sugar” would translate into “mean-spirited.” And still I was completely unprepared for the level of degradation I would be exposed to. Sewer rats could watch this movie and be so skeeved out that they’d need a shower.
The Sweetest Thing may be the worst movie I’ve ever seen. And I still haven’t recovered from Freddie Prinze Jr.’s explosive defecation in Head Over Heels.
If The Sweetest Thing were a movie review, this is how it might run:
“This is a movie starring Cameron Diaz and Thomas Jane. PENIS FART VOMIT BLOW JOB SPLOOGE UNDERWEAR VOMIT PENIS TOILET BOOBS FART BLOW JOB CUM PISS PENIS ‘FUCK GRANDMA!’* PENIS PISS CUM BLOW JOB FART BOOBS TOILET PENIS VOMIT UNDERWEAR SPLOOGE BLOW JOB VOMIT FART PENIS. It is a bad movie. The end.”
Let’s just leave the gross-out content aside — you can check my review of Tomcats if you really need to know the depth of my disgust for poop jokes — and consider the fact that The Sweetest Thing consists almost entirely of humor of the breast-implant and seminal-fluid variety… and that this has absolutely nothing to do with the alleged story. There was at least a context for the runaway testicle in Tomcats, and dear God, I never imagined I’d ever have something positive to say about that movie. But Jake Busey in a thong is, by comparison, a walk in the park compared to The Sweetest Thing. This movie’s running time of 84 or so minutes breaks down thus: 12 minutes of plot and 72 minutes demonstrating what it would be like to sit behind a garbage truck as it is emptied on top of you.
Christina (Diaz: Shrek, Charlie’s Angels) is a “player” who is allowed to get away with being a real bitch to men because she’s real hot. She meets Peter (Jane: Under Suspicion, Deep Blue Sea), who lies to her about himself for absolutely no reason whatsoever except that if he hadn’t lied, there’d be no movie**, and she decides instantly that she must have him. But she can’t commit. Yes she can. No she can’t. Anyway, he’s not available. Yes he is. No he isn’t. They get together. The end.
That’s 12 minutes right there. Meanwhile, Christina’s roommate Courtney (Christina Applegate: Mafia!) feels herself up, and her other roommate Jane (Selma Blair: Legally Blonde) rubs her own crotch. I think I can safely say that even if this sounds like a great movie to you, you’ll still be utterly revolted by the lack of a pretense of a pretense of a reason for Peter’s grandfather to insult his grandmother, for an anonymous character in a women’s restroom to share her gastrointestinal woes, for anyone, basically, to do anything that they do here, whether it’s meant to “humorously” gross you out or not.
I’m still trying to figure out what “the sweetest thing” is. Perhaps it’s the sense of luscious relief when the movie is over.
*A direct quote from the film
**We should have been so lucky
rated R for strong sexual content and language
viewed at a semipublic screening with an audience of critics and ordinary moviegoers