It is a very silly movie.


A Illusion review by Joan Ellis.

"Nine Months" is certainly the longest pregnancy I have ever experienced. It is a very silly movie. Whether it is also funny will depend on you.

Pregnant Becca (Julianne Moore) is stranded in the current stereotype of the young woman who lives with a man she loves in an arrangement that includes hard work and fun, but not marriage or, God forbid, children. Why would the "he" of this movie want responsibility or commitment when the woman of his dreams is already in his bed, and a red Porsche and San Francisco Bay are immediately outside the window of his perfect apartment?

When Becca decides her clock is ticking, she has a tough conversion on her hands in the person of her lover, Samuel, who is played--dare I say the words--by Hugh Grant. For one hour and forty-two minutes we watch Hugh pout, growl, and overact. It would be nice to think he is trying to lift the movie upward, but it is remotely possible that he thinks the audience just can't get enough of him. So overdone is his mugging that the pregnant woman becomes the movie's brightest spot. Actress Julianne Moore is a very appealing actress and has all the right reactions to the ludicrous chaos that surrounds her.

On their first visit to the delivering O.B., Becca and Samuel run smack into Dr. Kosevich (Robin Williams), a newly arrived Russian veterinarian who has recently decided to switch his specialty to babies. Williams causes a lot of spontaneous laughter with his malapropisms. He calls for "Anastasia" to anesthetize and discusses Becca's "Volvo" with gentle discretion.

Williams is very funny here, but he carries the rest of the cast straight into the familiar spectacle of Americans falling from farce to slapstick whenever they try a British specialty. The whole silly thing dissolves finally into a hospital scene full of enough fuzzy love to please Newt and the whole of America's heartland. This might have been a romantic comedy or a zany farce, but no one made the choice, so we have a little of everything and a whole lot of nothing.

And then there's the "incident." Although there can't be many Americans who would be shocked by a celebrity indulging in one-stop shopping, it may not be what people most want from the charming, awkward bumbler they had come to love in "Four Weddings and a Funeral." The box office will tell whether the laughter that rocks the theater at the sight of his face is derisive or affectionate. It hardly matters; the movie is still a bust.

Let's not blame the whole thing on Hugh Grant. Writer/director Chris Columbus has the distinction of creating three of the most intolerable movies ever made: "Mrs. Doubtfire" and those violent assaults on sensibility, the "Home Alones." "Nine Months" is not as excruciatingly bad as the others. Let's assume Columbus is in a lull.

Film Critic : JOAN ELLIS
Word Count : 489
Studio : 20th Century Fox
Rating : PG-13
Running Time: 1h42m

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