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film criticism by maryann johanson | since 1997

trailer break: ‘A Bunch of Amateurs’

Take a break from work: watch a movie trailer…

Oh, great. Every stupid cliché about England, with a few bonuses thrown in, like the little dog piddling on the luggage and the horny landlady. Poor Imelda Staunton. If it’s so gross that Burt Reynolds — age 72 — is kissing that hot young blond chick on the motorcycle in the film clip, it’s really not that much less gross that Staunton — age 52 — has to pretend to be all hot for him. (That one woman in the trailer to the contrary, Derek Jacobi is way hotter than Burt Reynolds, even considering that he plays for the other team. Speaking of: What the hell is Jacobi doing in this?)

Even given all that, though, the Hollywood-satire angle — movie stars are self-centered? you don’t say… — looks like something we’ve seen way too often before.

Oh my god, but Charles Durning looks like he’s on death’s doorstep, doesn’t he?

I admit my less than positive reaction to this trailer may have been influenced a tad by Charles Gant at the Guardian Film Blog, who had this to say about the film’s poor showing (£91K at 186 cinemas, for a per-screen average of £490) in its U.K. debut last weekend:

Local distributor Entertainment Films successfully protected the picture from critics, by the simple expedient of not advance-screening it, although a few jibes leaked out of its royal premiere (“I just felt sorry for the Queen”) a month ago. Marketing spend was either less generous than might be expected from this distributor, famed for vigorously supporting its releases, or else so well-directed at its target (older?) audience that it mostly passed this writer by.


A Bunch of Amateurs is now playing in the U.K.; no U.S. release date has been announced yet.

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movie buzz | trailers
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