Genre: Drama, Romance
Cast: Lindsay Lohan, Grant Bowler
Synopsis: The story of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton and their love for one another… also their hate for one another….and how they fucked over their spouses.
If you’re able to recall my post from this time last year then you will remember that I fucking hate Valentine’s Day. Nothing has changed in the past year so, again, I was again forced to get stoned on my lonesome and wallow in my solitude in my basement bedroom while watching something to try and cheer me up. This year I decided to watch a Lifetime movie because nothing makes me happier than shoddy movies about other people’s misery….especially if those movies star fuck-ups. Everyone knew this movie would be a train crash of epic proportions before it even movie aired. After watching it I can confirm that it’s less than stellar. However, I can’t help but feel that under all the melodrama and non-existent budget there was actually something quite intriguing about the story.
I have to be honest: I don’t think I’ve ever seen a movie with Liz Taylor in it. Having said that, I know that Lindsay was not right for the role. Sure, Lindsay is actually quite gorgeous when she’s not lining up for a mug-shot and she clearly understands what it’s like to have the world watch your private life unfold. In that way, you’d think she’d be able to understand Liz Taylor. However, Lindsay just can’t grasp the quiet gravitas of Liz Taylor or her sense of class. At no point in the movie was I convinced that I was seeing Liz Taylor. Instead I was just getting Lindsay Lohan in a wig, which was pretty much my biggest gripe with Naomi Watts in Diana too. That’s not to say that Lindsay is a terrible actress. Every time I see her in a movie I’m always surprised to find that she’s actually competent. She just wasn’t right for this particular role. I see her as more of a Courtney Love kind of crazy…not a bejewelled Liz Taylor kind of crazy.
I think my biggest problem with this movie is that no-one is even remotely likeable and the characters have a tendency to come off as schizophrenic. One moment we see a Liz Taylor who is strong and proud. In the next moment we see a Liz Taylor who is a spoiled brat. Then, in a scene or two later, we see a Liz Taylor who vaguely reminded me of Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct. Grant Bowler doesn’t do a much better job playing Richard Burton. In fact, I’m inclined to say he’s worse because he’s a total dick to everyone, including his first wife whose name I couldn’t remember so I referred to her in my notes as ‘scullery maid number 1.’ Much of the movie felt like a slagging match between a woman who was insecure about her pudgy hands and a guy who got offended when a gay joke was thrown in his direction. Seriously, there’s a part of the movie where it’s just fat jokes and gay jokes and then ‘hot make-up jewellery sex’ but you don’t even get to see the good stuff because it’s a Lifetime movie….no boobs or peen or nothing.
As I said in my introduction, despite the movie’s flaws (and there are many) there was something quite intriguing about the film and there were some hidden gems. The idea to have Liz and Richard tell their stories in a dark room, breaking the fourth wall as they do it, was quite a good one. Similarly, the idea of a film chronicling their relationship was good too but, overall, the execution was sloppy. In an ideal world, Liz & Dick would have been a stage play…one with good actors who could handle the challenge. Still, I tip my hat off to the makers of this movie for trying. Still, they should have gone with something a little wackier. Apparently, there’s a rumour that on 9/11 Liz Taylor, Michael Jackson and Marlon Brando all got in a car and fled New York City together. Can you imagine if you were a toll booth guy and you saw them? Now THAT would make a great movie.
- Liz and Dick’s fourth wall moments were quite good I thought.
- The movie reminded me how attractive Lindsay Lohan actually is.
- AHAHAHAHA! It’s Steve from Sex and the City.
- It made me feel better about being single on Valentine’s Day.
- Melodrama and a low budget.
- Douchey and schizophrenic characters.
- Knowing that Lindsay Lohan’s career will never be the same.
There are worse movies out there and, on the bright side, this movie could function quite well as a campy comedy. Is there a Lifetime movie out there that doesn’t function well as a campy comedy?