Sunday, April 18, 2010


Review: Death at a Funeral (2010)
1.5 stars
(out of 5)
By R. Kurt Osenlund

Out of a sizable ensemble, the two lead characters in “Death at a Funeral” are brothers Aaron (Chris Rock) and Ryan (Martin Lawrence), whose father's death brings their disparate, dysfunctional family members together. Aaron and Ryan are both writers – the former an unpublished hopeful whose dreams got sidelined by grown-up responsibilities, the latter a published author of what sound like smut novels – and one of the movie's recurring debates is over what constitutes good, legitimate writing. Being the eldest, Aaron wants to write and deliver the eulogy, and, yeah, he has that long-gestating manuscript of a novel just waiting to be submitted, but shouldn't Ryan, the real deal, be the one to do the honors? Or, as is also pointed out, is Ryan just a hack who writes garbage? Surely the filmmakers didn't mean to draw attention to the ineptitude of their dead-tired screenplay, but so they have, and thus the only memorable irony of this arduously unfunny farce is entirely unintentional.


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