Oh, they’re not pretty, Russell. Crowe attempts to show his softer side as Max Skinner, a high-strung stockbroker who needs to chill, in this Ridley Scott-helmed postcard of Provence. Most critics, unfortunately, would like to return to sender.
Many blame the script, which The Washington Post’s Ann Hornaday describes succinctly, if not predictably, as “Under the Tuscan Son of ‘Sideways.’” A few enjoy pointing out exactly which moment is the most painful: Time’s Richard Corliss notes the “long, agonizingly unfunny scene that Skinner spends at the bottom of an empty swimming pool,” while The Village Voice’s Nathan Lee opts for “when a Jack Russell terrier named Tati pees on Max’s loafer.” Don’t even think of asking The Hollywood Reporter’s Kirk Honeycutt to choose between the two scenes, as he’s too busy gnashing his teeth over the movie’s plot holes.
All that said, I will still see this movie at some point. Though I do wonder if I’ll enjoy it as much as I did French Kiss. (And that is not sarcasm.)