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The Independent Critic

STARRING
Diane Keaton, Queen Latifah, Katie Holmes
DIRECTED BY
Callie Khouri
SCREENPLAY
Glenn Gers
MPAA RATING
Rated PG-13
RUNNING TIME
104 Mins.
DISTRIBUTED BY
Overture Films
 "Mad Money" Review 
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I have to ask you a question.

You're sitting here reading this review.

Why?

Do you really expect "Mad Money" to be a great film? Perhaps, just because it features the Oscar-winning Diane Keaton?

Don't get me wrong. I'm appreciative. Writers love to have readers. I would write without you, but I certainly get immense satisfaction out of knowing I have a rather remarkable group of steady and loyal readers.

But, really. Do you really need me to say it for you?

Sigh.

Okay..."Mad Money" sucks.

There, you have it. Feel free to stop reading now or, on the offbeat chance I crack a joke or two, you may also feel free to continue reading.

In the film, Diane Keaton plays Bridget, a well-to-do woman whose hubby (a scene-stealing Ted Danson) is downsized and the family is left a quarter-million dollars in debt.

Her answer?

Groan...Get a job as a janitor at the Federal Reserve Depository WHERE she quickly figures out how to strike it rich with the help of her soon to be buddies, Nina (Queen Latifah) and Jackie (Katie Holmes).

Are you still reading?

Gee whiz.

As directed by Callie Khouri ("Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood"), "Mad Money" plays more like "Thelma & Louise" meets "Fun with Dick & Jane." Ironically, Khouri actually penned "Thelma & Louise"...go figure.

There is literally nothing in "Mad Money" that even remotely makes sense and, unlike this weekend's "Cloverfield," the film completely collapses under its stupidity and surprisingly weak performances from the usually dependable Queen Latifah and the "I'm just glad to be out of the house" Katie Holmes.

Beyond the insipid storyline, "Mad Money" is just completely lacking in anything resembling an emotional or logical core. What drives the women? What motivates them? Are they even remotely happy when their plot starts to work? Are they even remotely freaked out when it starts to crumble?

It's impossible to tell.

Likewise, the heist itself is completely illogical. There's never any obstacles, challenges or such. At least in "Office Space," a dot got put in the wrong place and conflict ensued...in "Mad Money," Khouri gives us a lighthearted comedy that isn't funny and a heist film that isn't even remotely suspenseful.

On the plus side, Keaton actually tries to save the day. It's impossible to not love an actress who, even when surrounded by complete and utter mediocrity, refuses to throw in the towel. The performances from Keaton and Danson are, at times, quite delightful and Milton himself, Stephen Root, shows up in a winning supporting role.

"Mad Money?" Hmmmm. Very true. If you spend your money on this film, I guarantee you'll be mad.
 

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic

    The Official Rating Guideline
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    • C: 2 Stars
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    • D-: .5 Star
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