Lay The Favourite
- Director: Stephen Frears
- Genre: Comedy
- Cert: 15A
- Details: US/TBC
Ah, the power of hot pants. Lay The Favourite is a confusing movie. Not because the story takes place in, to me anyway, the indecipherable world of betting but why everyone goes miles out of their way to help Rebecca Hall out of whatever hole she finds herself in is never really explored. Maybe it's because she has a penchant for wearing hot pants in every scene.
Hall plays ditsy stripper Beth who dreams of being a cocktail waitress in Vegas. She isn't in town long before Bruce Willis' bookie offers her a job. Why? It must be the hot pants. She's trained up on the job and it's not long before Willis trusts her with a lot of money. Why? The hot pants? When she's offered a bigger job by Vince Vaughn's risk-taking bookie when so many others are more qualified we reckon it's because of those hot pants. When Willis' wife, Catherine Zeta Jones stomps into the room she takes an instant dislike to our Hall. Why? Okay, that one might be a little easier to understand. But then Hall's heart is torn between her new job and her new love, Joshua Jackson, who falls head over heels for her after one night. Why? Ah, this joke is running thin like the garment on her hot pants!
There's no reason why Lay The Favourite exists. I couldn't figure out its view of the world. It doesn't have anything to say on the nature of gambling addiction - even the terrible Two For The Money managed that (gambling addiction was terrible, it said). There is too little at stake for Hall's Beth to get behind her and her giggly girl routine can grate. Willis at least has to keep his business afloat and snarly wife in good humour but he plays it at such a high note it's hard to take his rants seriously. During one tirade after he dropped twenty grand, my eyes were drawn to the game on the TV in the background A brief flirtation with Hall is raised and then dismissed, without it having an impact on anything that follows. No character is developed. At one point Willis tries to convince an estranged Hall to come back and work for him by listing all the things she's good at but these qualities aren't in the movie. This is an odd overlook from Frears, a director known for his character-driven films.
However, because it moves quickly and so many characters have a say in what's going on, Lay The Favourite stumbles on energy from time to time, and the dialogue of D.V Devincentis (Grosse Point Blank, High Fidelity), adapted from Beth Raymer's memoirs, can entertain. When Vince Vaughn's loud cad is eventually used he only serves to remind one of a better comedy you could be watching. And of course there's Rebecca Hall in hot pants. I wasn't immune.
Review by Gavin Burke | 12:27 | Friday 22nd June 2012 | Movie Review
Sounds terrible but I'll probably go and see it (for the hot pants)Posted 20:27 | Wed 20th Jun 2012
It was not as bad as I thought it would be. It Is a very good story really,but just does not take off. Rebecca Hall only wears hot pants in the first scene and after that it is cut away jeans,so nothing too exciting there really.Posted 16:37 | Sun 24th Jun 2012
Log in to leave a comment
The opinions expressed here are those of the viewer and do not reflect those of Entertainment.ie. Entertainment.ie accepts no responsibility, legal or otherwise, for their accuracy of content. Please contact us to report abusive content