Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Movie Review: "I Feel Pretty" (2018)

Director: Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein
Year: 2018
Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 1 hours, 50 minutes

A woman who is insecure about her appearance knocks herself unconscious during a soul cycle class. When she wakes up, she believes she has become the most beautiful woman on the planet, even though she looks exactly the same. Her altered perception gives her new found confidence and new opportunities, but what happens when she realizes her physical appearance hasn't changed?
"I am brave. I am blonde. I got this." (Image Source)
It doesn't matter what you look like on the outside, the confidence you have on the inside is all that really matters. Well, that and a little luck dream that your job is launching an 'every woman' line. Well, that and the fact that people aren't going to say anything that would shatter your delusions. "I Feel Pretty" is written and directed by Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein. Though this is their feature film directorial debut, they have worked together as writers on movies like "How to Be Single," "The Vow," and "Never Been Kissed." It stars Amy Schumer as Renee Bennett, a woman who has issues with her self-image. She believes that all people care about is the way you look, and she also doesn't think she looks good. One night, she wishes to be beautiful. While at a soul cycle class the next day, she is knocked out when her bike breaks. Though Renee hasn't physically changed, she wakes up thinking she has and sees herself as the prettiest woman alive. This gives her a newfound sense of confidence and a new attitude and outlook on life. In turn, things start falling into place as her dreams begin to come true.
"You're going to see what you've always wanted to see." (Image Source)
"I Feel Pretty" sets out to have a good body positive message for women, which is unfortunately lost somewhere along the way. It's a comedy that wants to say it is OK to be average sized, overweight, or average looking. Then, most of the humor relies on the shock of all these people seeing a normal looking woman act like she is God's gift to the world. "Haha, look at that normal entering a bikini contest and twerking around stage showing off her best exotic dance moves." "Haha, watch this average woman gobble down food and boast about her good genetics while people stare dumbfoundedly with borderline disgust." "Oh look, Renee's high confidence scored her dream job. Luckily, she applied just as the makeup company that is usually fully staffed by professional models is starting an "every woman, poor person" line of cosmetics at Target where Renee can specialize in delivering the perspective of the subordinate woman. She can tell the beautiful richies how the normal and ugly poors live and what they expect while shopping for bargains at Target.
"I know I look good. I don't need some room full of drunk guys for me to know that/" (Image Source)
All that being said, there are still some funny moments of wit and slapstick in "I Feel Pretty" that do hit there intended mark. Rory Scovel's subtle, often self-deprecating humor makes for a lot of great interactions with the now hyper-confident Amy Schumer. Michelle Williams has a pretty good shtick going with her character's high pitched voice and slightly oblivious attitude. The story itself is completely formulaic. It does irk us a bit that the writers resort to the trope of "fat girl gets confidence and dumps her long-term, average ol' friends for the "beautiful people" now that she's hot shit." Apparently, gaining self-esteem also means you are guaranteed to turn into an isolationist asshole.

"I Feel Pretty" isn't a total disaster and its heart is in the right place, but it loses something in its delivery.

My Rating: 5/10
BigJ's Rating: 4.5/10
IMDB's Rating: 4.1/10
RT Rating: 35%
Do we recommend this movie: Meh.

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