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The unassuming charm of Anna Faris – her expressive face, timing and sympathetic address to the camera – has been lent to a cartoony type of comedy since the Scary Movie franchise. But she could be a big star with the right material, perhaps something with more seriousness and pathos. Overboard isn’t it.
This strained comedy turns on a jokey duplication of events hinted at in the title. Kate (Faris) is a hardworking single mom with three kids, and a trainee nurse working two jobs to make ends meet: pizza delivery and contract cleaning.
One day she shows up at the quayside to hoover the luxury yacht of spoilt, mega-rich playboy Leonardo (played by Mexican actor Eugenio Derbez). He orders her around too much, while coming on to her. Kate objects and he simply pushes her overboard and sails off. But then he falls overboard himself and loses his memory on being washed up on the beach.
When Kate sees a local news report about this mystery amnesiac, she has the cute idea of showing up at the hospital, claiming that he is her husband and taking him home, so that she can at some stage force his plutocrat family to stump up her unpaid cleaning fee.
But, inevitably, this arrogant puppy, having to be a stepfather-cum-housecleaner at Kate’s home, starts learning real family values. He turns out to be kind of nice and pretty attractive as well. Could Kate be falling (overboard) for him? Much turns on what will happen when Leonardo recovers his memory and how Kate will handle the loss of her moral high ground when he accuses her of lying – all this is fudged, a bit.
The plot is carefully managed and the infighting of Leonardo’s Carlos-Slim-level billionaire family is reasonably diverting. But the funny lines were missing, and so was the fizz between Kate and Leonardo.
Source: The Guardian
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