Shallow Hal (2001)
Main cast: Gwyneth Paltrow (Rosemary Shanahan), Jack Black (Hal Larson), Jason Alexander (Mauricio Wilson), Joe Viterelli (Steve Shanahan)
Directors: Peter and Bobby Farrelly


Shallow Hal is the movie the Farrelly brothers will make when they discover religion. Wait a minute. Shallow Hal is, like Shrek, a movie that tries to be all about "beauty is more than skin deep", but it's more actually akin to a bully smacking you bloody until all your teeth have fallen off, only to go, "Oh yeah, violence is baaaaad" as he leaves you crumpled in agony at the ground.

Jack Black is a moron. Rather overweight and not at all the Antonio Sabato, Jr type, he nonetheless insists that all his girlfriends be FHM centerfolds. Needless to say, he isn't very successful in that department. When he is trapped in the lift with Anthony Robbins one day (this movie will prove once and for all that Robbins is the real antichrist), Tony Robbins weaves a spell on Hal. Hal, from now on, will see only the real beauty, the "inside" beauty, of women.

The joke here is that all ugly and fat women are beautiful inside, while pretty ones are evil and nasty because pretty ones don't give head to ugly fat moron males. Hence Hal falls for overweight Rosemary Shanahan, who is overweight but is good because she does volunteer work and all. I bet she being the boss' daughter has nothing to do with it. Trust men to make a cynical statement about women even when they claim to be Respecting Woman. Kiss my sexy overweight ass, scumbags.

Gwyneth Paltrow does an excellent job as the insecure, overweight Rosemarie who just happens to look like Gwyneth Paltrow. Jack Black is also excellent as the earnest and actually nice if misguided Hal. The problem is that the script ruins their characters, reducing them into caricatures. Yeah, yeah, we are supposed to love Rosemary despite her size, but the movie also invites us to laugh at her size. By showing us the "real" Rosemary as Gwyneth Paltrow and not Paltrow in fat suit, the movie is already making a mockery of itself. Sure, fat, fat whatever, as long as she looks like Gwyneth Paltrow, yes?

Besides, she's the boss' daughter.

So, yeah, here's a finger to the Farrellys and the scriptwriters. It's okay to be politically incorrect, but being a dumbass while pretending to be a good samaritan, well, hey, here's a merry big fuck you to you too.

Rating: 51


My Favorite Pages

This movie at Amazon.com

This movie at Amazon UK

Search for more movie reviews:

My Guestbook Return to The Movie Autopsy Guild Email