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Music and Lyrics (Widescreen Edition) (2007)

Comedy movie directed by Marc Lawrence

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Hugh Grant elevates this amusing trifle!

  • Sep 1, 2007
  • by
I almost think I could watch Hugh Grant do just about anything and be amused. His deadpan, fluttery-eyed delivery seems to hit my funny-bone just right. In well-written work like 4 WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL or the sadly overlooked ABOUT A BOYAbout a Boy (Widescreen Edition)...Grant is a mega-star. He is an actor of seemingly limited range...yet the work he can do within that range is astounding. He seems to have a dial that says "CAD" and he can turn it up or down as need-be. In BRIDGET JONES...he dials it up. In MUSIC & LYRICS...it's dialed pretty far down. He's a charming looser, seemingly happy to lead the life of a has-been pop star from the '80s. He entertains for high-school reunions and at amusement parks with professional enthusiasm...but no real drive. He lives comfortably in a gorgeous Manhatten apartment...and doesn't seem to care to be creative or relevant again.

Then an unusual opportunity to write a song for the leading pop-diva of her day (think Christina by way of Britney) AND to perform on the recording gives him a late life chance to become "famous" again. But he needs a songwriter.

Through a series of mild but unlikely events, he teams up with Drew Barrymore...who is a cute, funny presence as always...but frankly, her fast-talking, ditzy persona is wearing thin. She's no little kid anymore, nor is she even a young lady. She's a mature woman who needs to grow up...much like Hugh Grant's characters always need to! I enjoyed her...but the odd-pairing of Grant and Barrymore isn't as sparkling as another pairing with Grant might have been. Perhaps someone as witty...not just quirky.

Anyway, this is a pretty minor quibble, because the film belongs to Grant. From the absolutely brilliant, spot-on video that starts the film (Grant in '80s attire in an old video for his group's song "Pop Goes My Heart") to all his mumbled asides...Grant is just so much fun to watch and listen to. I chuckled throughout the movie. Even though Grant is truly coasting a bit in this film...his charm still oozes. I mean that in a good way!

Kristen Johnson has a small role as Barrymore's sister, and she's an over-the-top delight. Big, noisy, passionate, funny, sexy and very much THERE...it's time she had a bigger role sometime. I kept imagining a pairing of some sort between her and Grant...talk about opposites!!

The film takes lots of easy buy amusing jibes at the current state of the music business...particulary in the way the young pop star embraces religions and cultures in a totally non-understanding way. She is blithely unaware that having a giant buddha (from which she emerges in almost no clothing) as the kick-off to her concert is hugely offensive. These scenes are like something out of SPINAL TAP.

You could certainly do far worse than spending 100 minutes with Grant and his co-stars. The film is a triffle, but it is amusing, occasionally truly clever and as far as my wife and I are concerned, the opening video is worth the price of admission!

Not really for little kids, because there isn't really any slapstick or real physical comedy. It's a film packed full of dialogue...a treat of adults looking for a safe, fun diversion.

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More Music and Lyrics (2007) reviews
review by . November 15, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Way Back Into Love
I was never a fan of Hugh Grant , but sometimes you can write someone off totally and one day, unexpectedly, out of nowhere, they come back and surprise you. Such is the wonder of life. One never quite knows what one will get in the future despite the certain past. You think you've figure it out and then a new light dawned on you when least expected ;-)       Simple plot, simple theme, simple song. Yet, it is precisely this simplicity that makes it such an entertaining …
review by . April 29, 2009
I really enjoyed this tale of a struggling musical "has-been" who gets an opportunity to write a song for a pop superstar and by chance, finds a lyrics writer from an unexpected source (the lady who waters his plants).     The acting is great all around from Grant's dour ex-superstar demeanor, to the goofy Drew Barrymore, to the mean song-writer, to Drew's bossy older sister. The music is catchy and good (like the music from That Thing You Do). I really enjoyed this film!
review by . October 16, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
Hugh Grant is the floundering has been of the 1980s musical scene, now relegated to playing high school reunions and amusement parks. His talent as a lyricist has vanished.     Drew Barrymore is surprisingly good at the ditz substituting for the regular plant waterer. (Yes, plant waterer.)     Grant is offered the opportunity to write a new song for a pop tart rock queen, Cora Corman played by the drop-dead gorgeous and talented Haley Bennett.     …
review by . January 01, 2008
I really enjoyed this tale of a struggling musical "has-been" who gets an opportunity to write a song for a pop superstar and by chance, finds a lyrics writer from an unexpected source (the lady who waters his plants).    The acting is great all around from Grant's dour ex-superstar demeanor, to the goofy Drew Barrymore, to the mean song-writer, to Drew's bossy older sister. The music is catchy and good (like the music from That Thing You Do). I really enjoyed this film!
review by . August 22, 2007
It's easy to dismiss Music and Lyrics as just another light romantic comedy, but that's because the whole "light romantic comedy" genre is so easily dismissible. That wouldn't be fair though, because this is a wonderful little movie that's the kind you like to own and pull of the shelf sometimes.    Drew Barrymore seems to get more charming and polished with each movie she makes - and given the number of roles she's played, that's saying a lot. As Sophie, the plant girl-turned-lyricist, …
review by . May 22, 2007
Cute little movie starring Hugh Grant as a washed-up 80s rock king...reduced to performing in venues like amusement parks. Drew Barrymore is filling in for the girl who usual waters his plants...and shows an unusual propensity for rhyming. Hugh sees in Drew the assistance he needs to complete a song that he is penning for the reigning pop princess. Of course, misunderstandings abound, and when their song is chosen by the hit artist, there are "creative differences." The romance goes downhill from …
review by . May 19, 2007
posted in Movie Hype
Music and Lyrics is exactly what you'd expect.    Hugh Grant plays the charmingly sarcastic character that his fans know and love.     Drew Barrymore, doe-eyed and quirky, as only Drew can.     The story is feel good, with enough tension and humor to make it worth the time investment. Some clever dialogue, a nice blend of artist angst, and a good support cast. A half-dressed prone-to-writhe teen pop star is over the top. I wish one of Sophie's …
review by . May 08, 2007
(2 1/2 *'s) 'Music and Lyrics' scores a great premise for a movie: A washed-up has-been 80's pop star, Alex Fletcher (Hugh Grant) wants to jump-start his status from amusement park retro act to a songwriting superstar. Trouble is he isn't cut out for any sort of comeback. That is until he meets an oddball songwriter, Sophie Fischer (Drew Berrymore) to be his "soul (mate) and inspiration". Having an older sister (played likably enough by Kristen Johnsten) who is a rabid "Pop" fan (the name of Alex's …
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I've got my own site, www.afilmcritic.com, on which I'm posting my reviews. I am 46 years old, married 25 years, two kids (23 & 18) and currently work in accounting/finance. I spent 15 years … more
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Music and Lyricsis frothy and sweet, like the top of a perfect cappuccino shareda deux. Hugh Grant is a self-professed "happy has-been," playing his befuddled, adorable persona more spot-on than he has sinceFour Weddings and a Funeral. As Alex, former member of an '80s pop band who years later is playing at water parks and high school reunions, he's settled into a life of lesser expectations. Drew Barrymore, quietly radiant, is Sophie, the underachieving girl Friday who arrives to water--make thatoverwater--Alex's plants--and to explode him out of that comfy rut. If the plot's a bit farfetched, it matters not, since the two lead characters are so likable--and make such beautiful music together. Big bonus: the supportive role of Kristen Johnston as Rhonda, Sophie's older sis (and longtime Alex fan) whose hilarious performance threatens to steal the show whenever she's onscreen. (The owner of a chain of successful weight-loss centers, Rhonda tries to comfort a rattled Sophie: "Want to do some stress eating?") The film also marks the remarkable debut of Haley Bennett, who plays a pop star of Britney/Cristina proportions with deadpan sincerity radiating through her skimpy outfits and mega-extensions. As Alex and Sophie work on crafting musical magic, something else is taking hold. It's music to the ears of anyone needing a sweet romantic comedy that hits all the right notes.--A.T. Hurley
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Director: Marc Lawrence
Genre: Comedy
Screen Writer: Marc Lawrence
DVD Release Date: May 8, 2007
Runtime: 96 minutes
Studio: Warner Home Video
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