|The Wedding Planner and Jennifer Lopez's Legacy of Love|
posted by B and Paul on 5/03/01
Whatta you think I stoopit or somethin'?
America's love affair began with Jennifer Lopez on the hit FOX network comedy show "In Living Color." Lopez was crucial to the success of the show, because every time there was thirty seconds to kill between a killer Jim Carrey or Damon Wayans sketch she would come out in stonewashed jeans to dance. This wasn't an easy task, however, as J-Lo (then known as "the pudgy Hispanic one with the bad hair") needed between four and seventeen-thousand other dancers to help out. They were known as the "Fly Girls," girls so FLY that they could take the FUNKY PHAT beats of DJ SW-1 to the NEXT LEVEL.
DJ SW-1 is now known as "Shawn Wayans," star of "Scary Movie" and one-half of the reason why the execs over at the WB can't see black people doing anything other than picking cotton. This guy's got the comedic timing of Timothy McVeigh. That whole family is hit or miss anyway. Keenan Ivory Wayans is responsible for "I'm Gonna Git You Sucka," one of the funniest movies I've ever seen. Brother Damon's got a pretty good standup act and has a hit show on television this season. Brother Marlon was in "Dungeons and Dragons," which is a lot like being responsible for the Holocaust. Thora Birch was in that as well, though, so it's forgivable. That makes BOYEE SW-1 a "Level Four Wayans Brother." Pretty soon we're gonna be seeing Wayans Brothers commercials with pissed-off looking kids going "Level Four Wayans Brother... 10 hours." That's how long it took to make them laugh.
So next to Shawn Wayans and an Astrodome full of worthless Fly Girls, Jennifer Lopez looked like a big honkin' pile of money. Hollywood took notice and cast her in "Money Train," the Wesley Snipes/Woody Harrelson vehicle that is so well-written and influential for society that teenagers run around quoting it still today. Kids bring "Money Train" lunchboxes to school. Effeminate teenage boys watch "Money Train" and cry, because THAT'S WHAT THEY WANT TO DO WITH THEIR LIFE. Rob trains and play basketball.
Right click and "save as" to see about 1/100th more of Jennifer Lopez than we usually see. 757 KB
Jennifer's next groundbreaking role was as Tejano superstar "Selena." Lopez was so convincing in this role that thousands of America's illegal-Hispanic housekeepers began plotting to murder her. On a more serious note, I was seventeen when Selena was released into theaters, so the movie helped me grasp the media's undying obsession with death. If Selena hadn't been killed she wouldn't have had her own movie...she would've starred as "taco-eater #2" in the background of some shitty erotic thriller. Just like Madonna. Madonna's got more money than Jesus F. Gates and can't elevate her performance on film above that of "queef-inducing."
No habla Ingles...no habla! NO HABLA BLAM BLAM BLAM
Nobody expected the triumph Lopez achieved when her independent art-piece on the relevance of life and humanity, "Anaconda," received 11 Oscar nominations and took home a statue for "Best Picture Featuring Ice Cube w/o Chris Tucker." J-Lo (still in her twenties, so not technically "J-Lo" yet) unfortunately did not win the Academy Award for "Best Latina Actress with a Crappy Accent Showing Breasts." Rosie Perez won that in 97 for the edge-of-your-seat special-effects epic "Subway Stories: Tales from the Underground," where she doesn't have a single line and has a bunch of sex on a train. Not a MONEY train, mind you, just a normal train. Fucking academy.
The disappointment and failure sent a depressed Lopez into the recording studio to record her most personal and introspective dance record ever. Jennifer was no longer content dancing poorly to Biz Markie remixes on Fox...now she was a DIVA, and could dance poorly to her OWN remixes. The first step was capturing a national market to express her innermost longings - and it wasn't long until the Carson-loving pube-lacking ne'erdowells of Total Request Live embraced her with open, and subsequently shut, arms.
Her first single, "If You Had My Love," showed the world what an artist she was, and that she wasn't afraid to tackle a touchy subject that no-other artist in recorded history had the cajones to tackle: Love.
If you had my love and I gave you all my trust would you comfort me
Tell me baby
And if somehow you knew that your love would be untrue would you lie to me
And call me baby.
The fact that she openly rhymed "me" with "me" and "baby" with "baby" amazed and astounded the TRL fans and made them all type "OMG!!!11" to each other on America Online. Lopez - the consummate professional - realized that she had hit it big in the music industry, and couldn't follow up the brilliant verse of "On the 6" with something half-assed.
Tossing and turning , Emotions were strong
I knew I had to hold on.
"Waiting For Tonight" dealt with the exact same thing as every other song on her album, but the video featured her in a bikini so it was a huge hit. Plus, her emotions were strong. THEY WERE STRONG. Strong emotions! With fellow almost-Latina superstar Christina Aguilera already commenting on strength ("for the strength, to be strong") it was a risky move, but she got her point across. Never again will we doubt that her emotions are STRONG. Strong emotions. Strong.
Around this time, after a failed engagement and failed marriage, Jennifer Lopez took a look around. She knew that success was great, but that she needed someone with a tender heart and a powerful soul to help her cope with all the strong emotions she was feeling. She chose Puff Daddy. Puffy soon dedicated his courtship of Jennifer to his deceased friend Biggie Smalls. Record companies gave him millions of dollars.
P Diddy's Super Scooter goes VROOM VROOM!
Who'd have thought that a relationship between a Latin woman who speaks at ten-thousand words a minute and a rapper who raps about how rich is his over old songs wouldn't last? They could've talked really fast over old songs, or rapped about how rich they were together...but alas, a nightclub shooting and Lopez's possession of a stolen gun broke up the seemingly fate-driven relationship. As soon as Puffy went to trial, J-Lo (who is now 31 years old and can officially give herself a stupid ass nickname) dropped him like a sack of bricks. Puffy dedicated the bricks to Biggie. Record companies gave him millions of dollars. He was real sad.
J-Lo's commitment to powerful song-writing, her willingness to accept introspective and thought-provoking movie roles, and dedication to loved ones in need make her an inspiration to women, Latina and otherwise, around the world. Her recent projects include a brand new album, creatively titled "J-Lo," and a BLOCKBUSTER THRILL SPILLING SENSES SHATTERING EMOTIONAL RELIGION-ALTERING romantic comedy with a guy who sounds like he got kicked out of the trailer park for being "too much of a redneck."
And so our story begins... late one night, at the old amusement park...
Sometimes when you watch a movie, you'll be taken in by the story, convinced by and empathetic to the characters and feel you've spent a valuable ninety plus minutes in their presence. That is most certainly not the case with "The Wedding Planner", J-Lo's latest attempt at proving she's not just a pushy ho with a penchant for horse-toothed record producers. Like most of her attempts at suggesting "love don't cost a thang", this one falls decidedly flat.
Hey, Jodie Foster doesn't believe in God. I'm the reason.
J-Lo plays Maria "Mary" Fiore, a famous wedding planner. Only in the movies would you find a famous wedding planner - the same place where you find famous bouncers ("Roadhouse"). But anyway, she's renowned. And, get this, for a woman so meticulous in her planning of weddings, she can't find love herself. OMIGOSH, what a twist!
Maria's Italian father is determined that she find love, and even tries to set her up with a cariacatured (read:unfunny) meatball stereotype. He's inept and devoted, and we're supposed to find this funny. What's funnier is that the producers thought that Matthew McConaughey would somehow develop a chemistry with the disturbingly self-centred Lopez. He's a stoner who gets wasted with Woody Harrelson and plays the bongos naked, she's a diva with a hideously large posterior. It could not have worked.
And it doesn't.
You're purdy. I look like a bird.
You know a romantic comedy is in trouble, when it's neither romantic nor funny. There's maybe one chucklesome line in this movie and that was probably unintentional. J-Lo cannot play neurotic and she'll never be able to embody down-on-her-luck. There's a scene where she tries to cry and bemoan the fact that she's always been second best. Even in mock tears, she's sickeningly smug. She's smug throughout. We're supposed to care about the females in these movies, but Lopez cannot capture the nuance of her paper-thin character. She's not playing Joan of Arc, so getting paid several million dollars to play love-sick isn't too demanding. Like singing a lyric that doesn't involve gloating about her super phat private life, it was too much to ask.
McConaughey plays Steve, a doctor who saves J-Lo from being hit by a moving bin as she's stuck in a gutter in the middle of the road. Contrived much? It's a bad sign when I was screaming (ok, secretly hoping) for the bin to knock her down, but her padded buttocks probably would have acted as air-bags. Still, I wasn't into her character at all, and that was for two reasons.
1) J-Lo has no soul.
2) The script is abysmal.
Puffy's scooter fell over :(
McConaughey, for whom J-Lo's caricature becomes infatuated, turns out to be the groom of a big wedding she's planning. This is supposed to be surprising, as we were supposed to believe that "Steve" was a "what you see is what you get" character. No such thing in this sort of bullshit, until we learn by the third act that deep down they are nice guys with hearts of gold and pockets of miles. Lopez's Mary knows and likes the bride, and when she discovers that the "handsome doctor" she nearly kissed is actually getting married, she turns cold. But she soon heats up and the two realize that there was a connection. And this culminates in a frantic "she/he was the one for me" scramble.
There are all the usual Rom-Com staples, such as the annoying, quirky friends and the annoying, quirky family members. Problem is, the friends are just a pain in the ass and the family members aren't even funny. Always a downfall when you're trying to create a generic movie. The characters are dumb. They are at the service of the plot, which has McConaughey's Steve getting a statue's genitals super-glued to his sleeve and J-Lo crawling on the ground to avoid her old fiance. Not to mention the trademark prat-falls and romantic misunderstandings.
I've seen enough romantic comedies to follow the simple formula, but knowing the formula isn't enough to kill the fun. Knowing that the movie is going to be so plodding and vacuous, unfortunately, is.
J-Lo's other roles
"U-Turn" - Played a vixen, whose primary function was to seduce and destroy. She was also married to Nick Nolte, who later turned out to be her father. She let Sean Penn bust a nut. Then drove him crazy in the desert. She was only here for the T+A, but this got her noticed.
"The Cell"- Played a child psychiatrist. Actually put in a good acting performace. Still, her psychiatrist character got to wear the best clothes, and Lopez was even photographed to look like the Virgin Mary. Good, tasteless, mind-fucking fun.
"Out of Sight" - J-Lo was Karen Sisco. She was an agent trailing George Clooney, the hottest con ever!!!!111 She eventually screws him in a hotel, and stuff. Still, besides her obligatory hooking up, J-Lo is impressive here. If she worked on her acting and dropped the stupid diva attitude, she might be more than a passing attraction.
So kids, what've we learned today?
Her love doesn't cost a thing. Except our souls.
Whatta you think we stoopid of somethin'?