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The Proposal

 

 
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Runtime: 108 min
 
Synopsis: A pushy boss forces her young assistant to marry her in order to keep her Visa status in the U.S. and avoid deportation to Canada.
 
Release Date: June 19, 2009
 
Written By: Pete Chiarelli
 
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3.5/5


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Posted July 8, 2009 by

 
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Bullock and Reynolds heat it upA modern-day “Taming of The Shrew” with a Green Card twist. Reynolds was himself, Bullock was sexy and Betty White stole the show.

Without pretense of being something other than a predictable romance comedy, The Proposal did not surprise, disappoint or lend itself to any other emotions outside of my cringing at the “awwwwws” that the female audience members would coo whenever people kissed, spooned or proposed onscreen. Not being the biggest fan of this genre of movies, I went into it with little expectations outside of seeing the hotness that is Sandra Bullock, only to leave feeling rather unimpressed.

The Proposal as you can tell by the title is about a marriage of circumstance and opportunity. Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock) is the attractive, uptight,chief editor of a publishing company with Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds) as her pandering administrative assistant. Margaret’s cut-throat, “wicked witch of the east” act has allowed her the opportunity to climb the ladder of success until she receives a note that her immigration status (she’s from Canada) is in jeopardy. Facing possible deportation and a job loss, she blackmails her admin into an illegal marriage in order to keep her job. However when they go to the Immigration office to parlay their plans, the agent sees right through it and tells them that they will be tested on their love and knowledge of one another. This then leads into a “meet the parents” scenario where the odd couple are introduced to Andrew’s secret life of privilege and a change of heart about one another.

I found Sandra Bullock’s portrayal of the Icey Margaret to be pretty good, being that I began to hate her, I would say she did a helluva job. Margaret, is a head case, never have I seen a woman this cold on film since Tilda Swinton’s portrayal of The White Witch in the Chronicles of Narnia. She is also a peculiar woman, going from office ice queen to singing Rob Base’s “It Takes Two” and shaking her ass to the Ying Yang Twins… I couldn’t make this up if I wanted to. I was not sure what to think of Margaret outside of her physical goodness, the character was not likeable even after her taming was done.Ryan Reynolds was harmless, and his character was written to be more of a prop than a person. Although his wit and timing are always solid, I can barely remember any of his lines outside of him looking confused and dazed the entire time. The parents are typical but Grandma Annie (Betty White) is who owns this movie. Claiming Native American blood, she does fire dances (yes… I know), loves lap dances and is very candid with her opinions. She is pretty much that strange, quirky senior that some of us have experienced in our lifetimes.

The formula as I’ve said is standard RomCom fluff
. There is an attempt of a side story dealing with the tensions of Andrew’s super successful father Joe Paxton (Craig T. Nelson) and his son but it felt so uninspired and pointless that I wished they had just left it out. This is definitely not something to run out and tell your friends to see. I would take it as a nice, edible RomCom that guys can watch with their ladies without the need for coffee to keep them awake. Would I recommend seeing this in the theater? Probably not, but it isn’t exactly bad either, just a strangely mediocre movie that cannot figure out what it is, or what it is trying to do.


Greg Dragon

 
Cinephile and opinion writer, Greg Dragon has been a fan of movies since the 80's when Kung Fu theater was all the rage and Roger Moore was James Bond. Greg is the founder and lead critic of Spicy Movie Dogs. You can follow him on Twitter @Rafacus or on his Google+ account.