New in Town (2009)
Uninspired, slack, overly sentimental, deeply formulaic, the romantic comedy New in Town is so lazy it could have been written by a committee of trained chimps. This tired fish-out-of-water story takes a big city businesswoman (Renee Zellweger) and drops her in frigid small town Minnesota. Get ready for funny Fargo accents and dated stereotypes, doncha know. First the locals are ridiculed and then our big city gal discovers that these small town folk are to be envied. Just once, I’d like to see a Hollywood movie where a big city professional takes an extended jaunt in some Podunk town and discovers at the end… that small towns are overrated and they’ll take the big city any day. Sorry Sarah Palin, small towns do not have a monopoly on values and are not any more truly American than we city dwellers. Anyway, Zellweger looks like she’s in pain the whole time, then again that could be that natural contortion of her scrunched-up face. There’s a romance between her and the local union rep (Harry Connick Jr.), some lessons to be learned, and a late savior in the form of tapioca pudding. New in Town is moronic at most every step, and given the current wintry economic climate, a romantic comedy about downsizing feels like a bad joke in itself.
Nate’s Grade: C