Archives for posts with tag: Jennifer Lopez

The 1990s were a time of wistful reflections set to soaring soundtracks in which our writer/narrator (who’s also sometimes producer and/or director) tells us his family story. Good times, bad times, bah, blah, blah. By 1995, it was time to let Mexican boomers have their day in the L.A. sun, so we end up with writer/director Gregory Nava’s “My Family” (mi familia). The cast is loaded with talent (Edward James Olmos leads), but most are underutilized as Nava rushes through a blue-collar punch list of cultural cliches. But it does make you wistful – for the film it could have been.

In “Money Train” (1995), a heist gets derailed before it reaches its destination. So does the plot. It was actually a decent buddy/action flick until the director decided to just destroy a bunch of shit instead of having an actual ending. The movie catches several careers in transition. Wesley Snipes was beginning to cool down. Woody Harrelson was moving from TV to movie star. So was Jennifer Lopez, long before her recording career. Chris Cooper was still a character actor, eight years before his Oscar. And last but not least, Robert Blake was shifting from famous actor to famous psychopath.

It is appropriate that artificial insemination is a key plot point in “The Back-Up Plan” (2010). The entire film smacks of artificiality. Don’t get me wrong. Jennifer Lopez has many moments of adorability and watching her be cute for 108 minutes wouldn’t be the worst way to fill a Sunday afternoon. But this rom-com is just so TV movie-of-the-week. The romantic interest is a TV guy (Alex O’Loughlin) and most of the cast are TV people (Tom Bosley, Noureen DeWulf, Linda Lavin, Melissa McCarthy). The producer? You guessed it: CBS Films. It’s not a film, it’s a cross-platform marketing tool.