Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson star in this remake of Michael Caine and Steve Martin’s classic comedy, Dirty rotten rascals. Set in modern times, elegant con artist Josephine Chesterfield (played by Hathaway) takes sloppy but clever con artist Penny (Wilson) under her wing and teaches her how to hone her craft. They team up to cheat a wealthy young prodigy (Alex Sharp) among his millions. During the elaborate trust game, Josephine and Penny turn on each other as they vie for money and the affection of their brand, who doesn’t seem to care that the two women are fighting for. his attention and seem absolutely crazy.
It seemed like an idea not to be missed. Maybe that’s why it went so badly – was everyone on board convinced that, since the storyline is almost exactly like the original, the new version was going to work no matter what? If you are a fan of the Caine / Martin version from 1988, then watch Agitation is a strange experience. Despite a few hardware updates, this is a scene-by-scene overhaul. Yet the laughter does not land, the new additions are desperate, the pace is inconsistent and the efforts of the performers are amateurs.
Hathaway tries a variety of accents and all of them are unconvincing and cheesy. That’s a real problem, as her character is supposed to be a master crook, but even when we hear Josephine’s actual voice, it looks like Hathaway is doing an Angelina Jolie skit in high school. Lara croft. As for Wilson, she stole a few scenes in Bridesmaids and has been making big, stupid jokes for a long time. Nothing here is different from the heavy, wacky antics Wilson has done before. She must overcome the indignity of playing “Fat Amy” three times in her career and find a role that is not degrading. Wilson has exactly one scene here that she plays: Penny reveals why she enjoys stealing from her victims, who always despise her when she walks into a room. The monologue has bite and Wilson is touching, but the moment flies by.
Agitation is much less an improvement of Dirty rotten rascals that it’s another Hot pursuit, the early summer flop of a few years ago with Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara. Both are cheerful, not funny, and hopelessly lazy. The inescapable moment here is a washcloth (invented entirely for this movie) that would have been too much for van Wilder. Hathaway and Wilson seem to love each other, but their character’s relationship isn’t really built, which makes their final moments confusing and inconsiderate.
While Frank Oz’s directing for the original wasn’t particularly elegant, he devised a witty, often hysterical, farce focusing on performance and getting wonderful work from Caine, Martin and the late. Glenne Headly. In this, Chris Addison, an episodic television director who is making his film debut, doesn’t seem to be in tune with the material: the timing is out of sync, the performances are all over the place and the whole thing is so over-lit, it got the looks pretty awful.
There’s nothing wrong with taking a beloved classic and doing a female-led remake, especially when your prospects are an Oscar winner and professional stage thief. That said, between the infamous 2016 ghost hunters, last years At the sea, and that, it looks like the fashion to remake of gender inversion needs to be reconsidered, at least before we get the rumor Splash rethinking with Channing Tatum as the mermaid (I’m not kidding). Dirty rotten scoundrels can and should have worked with women in the lead roles but, as hard as they try, Hathaway and Wilson don’t put on performances they can be proud of. It’s a lame and embarrassing movie.
There is one thing about Agitation that really impressed me: it’s so much worse than Serenityy, the heartbreaking January camp classic that starred Hathaway and Matthew McConuaghey. I didn’t think it was possible.
Rated PG-13/93 Min.
Image courtesy IMDB