Radio 09.04.09
This is Ron Salfen, “At The Movies,” and here’s my commentary on a film opening today at The Majestic Theater in Greenville :
“All About Steve” is one of those silly romantic comedy movies that tries so hard to be cute that it just plain looks like it’s trying too hard.
Sandra Bullock plays Mary Horowitz, a constructor of crossword puzzles for the newspaper in Sacramento .  She lives in her own little world of encyclopedic information.  She works from home (her parent’s home, that is), and doesn’t go into the office except to drop off her weekly offering, which allows her to be perfectly nutty all the time.  She’s always spouting off information that people didn’t ask for, but she’s so perky and cheerful while doing it that we really want to like her.  She manages to run off potential suitors with her constant know-it-all chatter, so she’s especially enamored of Steve (Bradley Cooper), her blind date with a television cameraman.  Steve can’t manage to discourage her enough; she’s virtually stalking him to his shooting locations.  When she becomes so obsessed with him that she turns in a crossword puzzle that’s “All About Steve,” that is, all the answers are to questions asking things like his favorite color and his grandmother’s name, her editor just lets her go, which frees her to stalk Steve to his next assignment.  The pretty-boy reporter of Steve’s crew, Hartman, played with amusing self-parody by Thomas Haden Church, thinks this is funny, and secretly encourages Mary to follow them, as they cover hurricanes, tornados, accidental shootings, and the proverbial deaf-children-falling-down-a-mine-shaft.  Mary manages to make friends wherever she goes, because she’s supposed to appealingly ditzy, smiles real big, never gets discouraged, and doesn’t have anyth ing unkind to say about anybody.  Kind of like “I Love Lucy” without the irony, or the caustic friends to cut the oil with a little vinegar.
But Sandra Bullock’s character is too much of a caricature to really identify with it, and the secondary cast is ‘way too sincere to be funny, either.
It would be difficult to object to this superficial little comedy, but equally difficult to recommend it.
This is Ron Salfen, “At The Movies,” for 93-5 KICK-FM