Saturday, April 26, 2008

Baby Mama Review

Baby Mama plays out partially as a by-the-numbers romantic comedy and partially as a biting satire of our cultural obsession with babies. The romantic comedy elements, which are applied to the burgeoning friendship between Fey and Poehler's characters (and also on a smaller scale to Fey's relationship with Kinnear), are about as cliche as they come and sort of drag the whole movie down. Where Baby Mama works is the various ways it pokes fun at 'baby culture.' From gags on child-proofing to prenatal vitamins to celebrity baby adoptions Baby Mama's commentary and quips are hilariously on-the-ball and, often, nicely acerbic. The cast here is great across the board. With mostly humorous but adequate turns from Maura Tierney and Greg Kinnear, a tolerable performance from Dax Shepard (I've never thought so highly of him...but I guess that isn't saying much) and a hilarious small role for Steve Martin the supporting players are very strong. Amy Poehler is quite funny here, but the real highlight is Tina Fey. Fey, probably the funniest comedienne working, plays the straight-woman against Poehler's absurd antics extremely well. She has the remarkable ability to crack up the audience just with just a slight facial expression. If only this didn't devolve into such a pit of cliches it could have really been something special, but as it stands it has some really funny moments a bunch of great performances.

Overall Score: 6/10

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