Following the modest box office success of Two Weeks Notice, writer/director Marc Lawrence re-teamed with Hugh Grant for Music And Lyrics. As romantic comedies go, it was the "filmic equivalent of elevator music" - not awful, but no great shakes either. Well, that is except for Grant's hip-swivelling performance as a washed-up pop star. Even so, it got a lukewarm reception from moviegoers.
Stop Us If You've Heard This One...
Eleven minutes of deleted footage reveals Aasif Mandvi as the biggest cutting room casualty. That's hardly surprising as his dithering, heavy-accented portrayal of a Pakistani receptionist isn't just tired and annoying, it's borderline offensive. Popular US comedian Brad Garrett is another victim of the editor's scissors, and there are a few more lazy throwaway gags like the old 'I just shouted at someone on the phone who isn't who I thought they were' routine. We're guessing The Cheeky Girls spend more time writing a song than Lawrence spends on a script.
A standard ten-minute Making Of featurette hears from Lawrence, Grant and co-star Drew Barrymore, basically recapping the story. Lawrence reveals that he wrote the part of Alex especially for Grant because of his flair for wordplay and "rock star" appeal. "His singing and dancing are really incredible," enthuses Kristen Johnson (playing an aging groupie), but they're all lying. Grant reveals that he had to endure intensive dance training - and that's just so he could squeeze into those leather trousers. "I look like a Parisian madam," he says, blankly.
At A Loss For Words
Grant taints his reputation for eloquence by 'bleeping' his way through the gag reel. That's aside from a bedroom scene with Barrymore, where he lays quietly under the sheets as she rolls around in convulsions of laughter. Just what it is that's so funny is left for you to decide...
Undoubtedly, the highlight of this DVD is the mock PoP music video, which opens the film. It's presented separately and features Grant in full mulleted glory, gyrating at such a rate he could probably power a small light bulb by himself. Sadly though, it's not enough to keep us from tuning out the remaining 90 minutes.
Music And Lyrics DVD is released on Monday 4th June 2007.