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Friday, September 21, 2012

Liz & Dick: Schadenfreude Fail

It's no secret that bad things can be enjoyed in ironic, campy, or even malicious manners. I have been known to indulge in my time (after all, this is Film Fromage, not Film Great Taste). As such, I assumed that Lindsay Lohan's "comeback" TV movie, Liz & Dick, would be deliciously trashy. The trailer, released yesterday, proves just how wrong I was.

Frankly, these 30 seconds made me feel sad. Everything is absolutely wrong. Instead of being overly dramatic a la Showgirls or infusing some humor, the trailer's tone is rather earnest. Reminder: This is a Lifetime TV movie starring Lindsay Lohan. Capitalize on her scandalous image in connection with Elizabeth Taylor's not-so-girl-next-door antics instead of being so very literal. Nobody is watching this as a serious biopic, so make it enjoyable!

Despite its earnestness, the trailer has seemingly no content. Sure, sexy words like "scandalous" flash on the screen, but nothing feels daring or edgy or even interesting. There isn't enough dialogue to excite or enough acting to feel compelled to tune in. Surely, Lifetime was trying to lure us in with some mystery and intrigue, but all they delivered was empty buzzwords and a couple of costume changes.

But what's even more distracting is Lohan's face. I understand that not every actress will look identical to the person she is portraying (i.e., Michelle Williams in My Week with Marilyn). However, Lohan's face is painfully bloated, making her look downright comical. Not only does she not look like Taylor, she does not look like herself -- she's Lindsay Lohan pretending to be Lindsay Lohan portraying Elizabeth Taylor. Sadly, the only time she even remotely embodies Taylor is when wearing huge sunglasses and a salt and pepper wig from late in life. Thus, her image's downspin overpowers any possible content within the trailer.

Let's be clear: Lohan knew what she signed up for with this film, and Lifetime was happy to indulge. That doesn't make me feel any better watching a shadow of the former Lindsay Lohan struggle at something so mediocre. There is no schadenfreude to be found here, just sadness.

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