Rated: PG-13 for adult language.
Genre: Comedy Romance
Directed By: Challie Kourie
Running Time:
Review by: Felix Vasquez Jr.
Review Date: 1/30/08
Special Features:
Not Announced.


Lethargy is the first word that comes to mind when I think of “Mad Money.” In spite of its horrendous title, and idiotic ad campaign, it’s not the worst movie of 2008, it’s just not a good movie. Every single aspect of it is drab, and dull, and utterly mediocre, to the point where I wasn’t entertained, nor bored. It began, it ran for ninety minutes, and it ended. I moved on to something else and instantly forgot I ever saw it. “Mad Money” doesn’t have pretensions about it, which is good, I guess. It’s a stupid girl power comedy that runs in the vein of shit like “Nine to Five” pairing three actresses in a scheme of “I Love Lucy” proportions and introduces some equally idiotic men who seek to hold them back and keep them in their places. The film is aptly void of laughs or any sense of real depth, so I sat with a basic straight face counting the minutes. The odd casting includes the threesome of Diane Keaton, Queen Latifah and Katie Holmes, all of whom are typical female clichés. One is an upscale fish out of water aristocrat, one is a single working mom, and the other is devoted to her rock star boyfriend.

Guess which is which, and you get a cookie. And of course once our heroines/criminals get their hands on the sweet dough, there are the clichés for the audience to rely on. There’s the eventual playing of “Money (That’s what I Want)” playing, and of course there’s the women playing with the money. Now normally, if it were hot women with string bikinis and greased bodies, I would enjoy it, but with these characters? Nah.  

Meanwhile, writer Gers works painstakingly to get us to sympathize with these felons because hey, they’re women in our society brought down by the man, they deserve it.  “Mad Money” really left me drained and with a sense of sheer apathy to the characters, the story, and the overall film which feels like a packaged money maker for the separate audiences these actresses are supposed to appeal to. In the process, Queen Latifah’s character is a boring trite individual, Keaton’s character is ditzy and shrill but the writers attempt to turn her selfish superficialities into a noble charm and fail, while Katie Holmes’ presence is oddly inconspicuous and drowned out by Keaton’s buffoonery and Latifah’s preaching. Holmes barely has much of any dialogue at all and the way she’s written comes off as confused. Is she supposed to be an airhead, or is she just naïve? Who cares, really? “Mad Money” is a trite and disgustingly bland little comedy that dabbles in some areas of comedy and harps too much on the whole sistahs doin’ it for themselves themes to take seriously. You have to give it credit for being so low-key in its idiocy, though.

I appreciate the studios willingness in promoting “Mad Money” with such a low key and hush hush manner, but that doesn’t distract from the basically mediocre, and lethargic story and a plot best suited for “I Love Lucy.” It’s a pass, if you’re not of the female variety.



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