Movie Review: ‘The Proposal’

This weekend, The Proposal starring Sandra Bullock offers a sorely needed respite from the worsening news of the nation.

The Disney comedy is defined by what it is not: it isn’t an endless stream of vulgar jokes. It isn’t an assault on the senses. It isn’t another asinine star vehicle. Though it also is decidedly not among the greatest movies made, The Proposal, featuring Craig T. Nelson (The Family Stone), Mary Steenburgen (What’s Eating Gilbert Grape) and Betty White (The Golden Girls), and co-starring a young actor named Ryan Reynolds, is a delight.

Miss Bullock portrays a hard-headed, Canadian-born businesswoman who, like most hardworking immigrants to America, is the victim of our arbitrary immigration system. She forces her secretary (Reynolds) to agree to marry her to avoid deportation, though she treats him (and everyone else) like dirt. The put-upon assistant to the boss from hell makes his own terms and conditions and the odd non-couple are off to his warm family home to keep up appearances and escape detection by a suspicious official. Yes, it’s sort of silly. But affable Ryan Reynolds balances his rising young New Yorker against her cold fish and his character’s disinterest in Miss Thing adds comic chemistry.

Their ridiculous arrangement juices the movie’s screwball sensibility and it’s good to see Sandra Bullock in a decent role again. After a week of Obama fatigue, with the President doing to a housefly what he’s doing to capitalism, do yourself a favor and say ‘yes’ to The Proposal.

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