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THE HOUSE BUNNY, 2008
Movie Reviews!

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THE HOUSE BUNNY
Movie Review
Directed by Fred Wolf
Starring Anna Faris, Colin Hanks
Review by Eli Manning




SYNOPSIS:

When Shelly, a Playboy bunny, is tossed out of the mansion, she has nowhere to go until she falls in with the sorority girls from Zeta Alpha Zeta. The members of the sorority - who also have got to be the seven most socially clueless women on the planet - are about to lose their house. They need a dose of what only the eternally bubbly Shelley can provide... but they will each learn on their own to stop pretending to be what others want them to be and start being themselves.

REVIEW:

The House Bunny is a movie that I like to call The Learning Annex Film. If you ever happen to take a course on screenplay writing at the Annex, you will go on a 3-4 hour lesson ride on how to write the greatest screenplay ever.

There is something called the up and down writing formula. Hitchcock mastered and now many films use this method -- especially mainstream comedies. How it works it that every 5 minutes in the film we go from an extreme high point of emotion to an extreme low point of emotion.

Examples of this method:

The House Bunny gets the gang of misfits to bond together to form a common goal and all is good -- until a major roadblock happens to damper everyone's spirits.

Then a luck thing happens and they are happy again -- until the antagonist (who is usually underwritten) does something to spoil everyone's mood again.

UP and DOWN we go on the movie roller coaster ride until of course the film ends on the high note and we all go home happy.

Not to say I have a problem with this method. It works for the audience and for me because it forces our inner emotions to go into many directions. And when that happens, we end up caring more. But of course there are many more reasons why a film works or not than the screenplay (performances, direction, editing cinematography, sound design, production design etc...), and The House Bunny fails in a the most important element.

A script written by the team who brought us Legally Blond, The House Bunny is almost a great film. The main problem with this movie is that it was directed by an amateur who doesn't understand a comedic beat or how to create a scene to scene transition shot if there was a gun to his head.

This is perhaps the worst directed film to come out of Hollywood in 2008. And the person who should be the most angry is the star Anna Faris, because she gives what could be the best female comedic performance in ages. Unfortunately it was ruined by a man who didn't know where to put the camera.

If you take a look at the full production credits of The House Bunny, you will see that almost every single major crew position was a female. All except for the director. So that leads me to the question of why the producers didn't hire a female director to make this complete female driven film?

The House Bunny is a movie about where females are in this world. Some like to play dress-up, as others like to read books and/or explore the reasons why we are on this planet! So....they are men who happen to not be men. The House Bunny

I loved so many things about this film, except for the way it was executed. And this wasn't the hardest film to execute either. If you go back and watch 1983's The Revenge of the Nerds, you will find the exact same story in The House Bunny. All except the gender roles have changed. So all the director had to do was steal that film's (which isn't bad and not dated at all) overall thematic visual design and use it for this film.

This film angers me because it could of been a classic. So why did they get this guy to direct the film? He doesn't have any experience at all, so they might as well had a female with no experience direct it. No matter how much a man thinks they know woman, he's still a man. And many great moments were missed because a man thought he knew woman.

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So go watch this film because Anna Faris is truly remarkable and perhaps one of the funniest females in the world today. She is playing a character who is smart in many ways but really doesn't have a vocabulary to express her real inner thoughts and feelings. And she was sheltered inside of the Playboy mansion for so long, that in many ways this is also the female version of 1979's Being There (a great film directed by perhaps the most underrated filmmaker ever in Hal Ashby).

Just take notice in the sloppiness of the scene changes in the film. We're on an emotional high in one scene and then we cut to another scene that is so rough, we feel we are hit by pebbles coming from the movie screen.

A must see film for any upcoming director on what NOT to do when making a film. Anna Faris should sue the director of The House Bunny for f**king up her brilliance!

2 stars out of 4!

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