It's already the end of the year and it feels like not too long ago Valentine's Day was grossing in the theater and Gary Marshall was grubbing his hands on some cash for a film without any storyline whatsoever. After making the cash, Marshall only figures he should try and do it again but with a bigger event this time around; the craziest night in New York City all year long: New Year's Eve. When one thinks about New York City on the night before New Year's Day you think electric, you think crazy, you think big. There is a lot that goes on in a city on a night like this and New York City is the place where that shiny ball drops so there are tons and tons of different stories to be told from many different perspectives. At Gary Marshall's disadvantage, he never tells a story anyone cares about anymore. Years and years ago Marshall knew how to make a decent film. With all these holiday "connection" movies he'll never get any care from anybody!
Is it seriously entertaining to watch a bunch of different characters going through different situations at the same time period? The film introduces one too many characters and throughout the entire film most either have no connection whatsoever and if they do, it's a connection where neither character share any screen-time. (Zac Efron and Sarah Jessica Parker as siblings... very unlikely) Gary Marshall looks at this film as a way to win cash through the long list of favorite celebrities. He thinks that as long as the film is filled with big stars speaking gibberish and running around doing absolutely nothing for two hours a movie MUST be made.
Where does the film ever lead? You've got a mother and a daughter who are dealing with normal issues in their relationship (except both Sarah Jessica Parker and her daughter overact most of their scenes), a Zac Efron and Ashton Kutcher as best-buds but one hates New Years because his heart was broken on the day years ago (Grow up, p*ssy. It's just another day), a sick man dying in the hospital who wants to see the ball drop one last time (Is Gary Marshall really playing this card? I feel no sympathy), and then a couple trying to push out their unborn child on the holiday so they can win money (Um, you are horrible parents. This plotline is not funny)? This is just half of the unbelievable and highly predictable stories that Gary Marshall tries to mash into New Year's Eve, and for what? Entertainment cannot be the answer to that question. The film is far too much a mess to be entertaining.
Only one plotline in the film did I find interesting. Whenever the film would bounce to these characters I'd wonder why Gary Marshall didn't just put the main focus on them, delete all the other trashy stories, and make an entire movie out of this one perfect story. A woman who is clearly not happy with her life keeps a New Year's resolution list and has added more and more onto it each year. When she meets a fun and full-of-life young adult through her job she quits (Check) and offers the man two tickets to one of the largest parties in the city if he is able to have her entire list checked off by the time the ball drops. The man, eager for the tickets, takes her on a wild-night in the city so that she can have the time of her life and complete her list. Surely, the sound of it isn't great but it was the only plot in the entire film that I found to be interesting and not completely tasteless.
Should I even name the large cast? I'd rather not considering not one performance in the film is worth mentioning. Let's just put it this way: You know that if Katherine Heigl and Sarah Jessica Parker are in a movie together it's going to be bad. Just because a film is crammed with loads of Hollywood celebrities for the sake of their names that doesn't mean the film is going to be good. The film is never but instead unbelievably cheesy. The film is never romantic but instead makes you want to barf. Gary Marshall has made a film ten times worse than Valentine's Day and I never even thought that was possible. His resolution in 2012 should be to retire.
Thanks for the read!
-This rant has been brought to you and part by Corey Wood