Win a Date With Tad Hamilton Review

by Andy Keast (arthistoryguy AT aol DOT com)
January 30th, 2004

Win a Date with Tad Hamilton! (2004): * out of ****

Directed by Robert Luketic. Screenplay by Victor Levin. Starring Kate Bosworth, Topher Grace, Josh Duhamel and Gray Cole.

by Andy Keast

I wanted to like the movie. Topher is funny and I got to look at Kate for 90 minutes (for the sake of brevity I'll refer to the characters as Topher, Tad and Kate), but that's about it. I can spin this and that, but not the irrevocable: the movie blows a fat one. The love speeches given by Topher and Kate, underscored by convenient dramatic music, are just as lame as the movie dialogues delivered by Tad which the movie attempts and fails to make fun of. A lot of dialogue is centered around a "smile" motif ("You have five smiles, Topher. One when you're this, one when you're that…") that is so idiotic it would warm the heart of Benny Stulwicz, the retarded guy on "L.A. Law."
There's a ridiculous sequence where Tad buys a farm (yes, one day he just buys a farm), and hilarity ensues, I guess, when Topher and Tad both attempt to woo Kate by chopping wood and milking a cow. This sequence is time-filler I suppose and of course has nothing to do with the rest of the movie.

Two or three bright spots exist. I personally think Topher Grace is funny, and
his behavior in some scenes got a few laughs. He has lines such as "Protect your carnal treasure," and "I will tear you to pieces with my bare hands…or vicious rhetoric." Corny and sitcomish, but Topher at least made it work occasionally. There's a good scene between he and Gary Cole -as Kate's dad- where Cole utters the only true statement in the movie: "Sometimes Goliath kicks the shit out of David."

As Martin Sheen once said: "absolutely g.d. right." While I was surprised that
the movie didn't turn Tad into a typical L.A. monster, what exactly is the point making him a human being instead? It's also convenient how Kate suddenly
stops being shallow in movie's last five minutes. I say a more convincing movie would first reveal Tad for the clueless scumbag he really is, but then let Kate continue in her shallowness and the two of them live a long, frivolous
California existence, leaving Topher humiliated and alone. Then at least the movie wouldn't be insulting to the audience, because I would (like to) think that the audience is smart enough to know that the Tads of the world always win. Forget about her, Topher. Save yourself.

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