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May 2007

GEORGIA RULE

By Wilson Morales

GEORGIA RULE


Distributor: Universal Pictures

Director: Garry Marshall

Producer: David Robinson

Screenwriter: Mark Andrus

Cast: Jane Fonda, Lindsay Lohan, Felicity Huffman, Dermot Mulroney, Cary Elwes, Garrett Hedlund


 

 

   

One way a film can be perceived as terrible is when the expectation the level of expectation is reduced to below the barrel, and the talent has a lot to do with it. On paper alone, the names of Jane Fonda, Felicity Huffman, and Lindsay Lohan all should generate a great deal of interest. Obviously there is a generational gap amongst each other and yet each one has a fan base that could spell a hit; but when the script is truly awful, there isn’t much can do to hold together. Taking a serious matter and mixing it into a comedy in poor taster is the least of “Georgia Rule”’s problems. The chemistry between the three leads is flat and unconvincing, yet Lohan does provide a spark in this mishap of a film.

At the outset of the film, Rachel is seen leaving the car of her mother Lily in the middle of the road when they get into another one of their arguments. Seems that mommy dearest was taking Rachel to stay with the one person who wouldn’t tolerate her behavior, her own mom Georgia (Fonda), whom she herself hasn’t seen in years. Grandma Georgia is a very polite and too neaty person who has her “rules” when it comes to behavior, which is totally the opposite of Rachel’s personality. Rachel, not yet in her 20s, acts promiscuous around any man she meets including the young lad (Hedlum) who tries to help her on the road to Granny’s. When she acts the same way towards the veterinarian she’s working for and he rebuffs her attempts, she drops the bombshell – that she grew up being raped by her stepdad (Elwes). When Georgia tells Lily about this, both mother and daughter try to way to settle their differences.

The problem with this profanity laced film is that while Lohan provides the sparks, the film doesn’t know if it’s a comedy or drama. Jane Fonda may have made an impression with her comedic skills in “Monster-In-Law”, but here, her humor is DOA; and Huffman is a bit over the top with her performance. Lohan, as sexy as they dress her up, tries her best to ignite something in this film, but sexy appeal has its limits. Neither of the characters are worth caring for. Director Garry Marshall has had some hits and misses in his career but he has never fallen this far down with a film, especially with this amount of talent. Rule of thumb – skip this film.