Daily Chick Flick: Maid in Manhattan  

I have no doubt that the expectations we carry about things will inevitably have some kind of impact on the outcomes we experience. You wake up expecting a shitty day, and don't be surprised when you hit the pillow that evening exhausted from the less-than-perfect day you helped create. I realize it can't always be that simple, but remember that we're talking about movies here for fuck's sake.

Which brings us to today's chick flick, Maid in Manhattan. I really had my fingers crossed on this one; J. Lo is nothing if not a complete burden on society, both in real life and in every other film I've watched her in. Yet there was a part of me which truly believed that between the awkward suaveness of Ralph Fiennes, and my slowly self-adjusting receptiveness to chick flicks, that this film had a chance of surprising me with a few laughs. I really don't think the English language has a word capable of stressing how absolutely wrong I was.

In the film, Lopez is a maid at a posh Manhattan hotel who lives in the projects with her 10 year old son. Then one day she's prompted by her co-worker to try on a $5K ensemble that a patron of the hotel had asked her to return. Just at that moment, her son (who is hanging out at the hotel while Mommy works), drags Ralph Fienne's character -- a highbrow Assemblyman vying for his Father's old Senate seat -- into the room to ask if he can help Fiennes walk his dog. She's caught off guard and he mistakes her for somebody worth knowing, but with this impetus in place the rest of the movie is pretty much locked down. If you're even remotely familiar with the story of Cinderella, filling in the blanks shouldn't be that hard. Basically a 3 year old could tell you how this movie ended for the characters -- happily ever after. Which is in stark contrast to how I imagine everyone else feels upon realizing what they just wasted their time and money on.

I don't care HOW chivalrous they want us to believe Fienne's character is. In real life, at the point where he learned she was a maid -- which happened to be the day after he slept with her -- he would have been OUT THE DOOR. The closest he would have even come to giving her a second thought is when he was laughing with his buddies at the Country Club over a good scotch about "that one time he went ghetto banging." But maybe I'm wrong; might it be every wealthy man's dream to fall in love with the help, especially an obnoxious single mother Puerto Rican who breaks out into spontaneous dancing with her equally obnoxious, opportunistic inner-city maid friends? God damn it I hate J. Lo.

Rest assured that I learned my lesson and have completely removed the option of watching another J. Lo film this month. Or for the entirety of my life come to think of it. Were it possible to find out which movies are her favorites I'd likely ban those as well. It really just makes me mad at America for elevating her to the point of celebrity. She's made millions off of us while providing nothing of value in return whatsoever. It's like she's the Bernie Madoff of films, minus the oh-so-needed jail time.

In case you hadn't sorted this out by now, the movie was awful, and not solely because of the awful person that starred in it. Not once did I crack a smile, nor did I find any of the characters relatable with any human being I've ever encountered in my life. Quite possibly this is the worst movie I have ever seen; this coming from a guy that saw Black Knight -- in the theater no less. Maid in Manhattan was boring, contrived, completely unoriginal, and nobody even made an attempt to work a semi-naked J. Lo into the picture. 5 pink tacos. Total chick flick. I'd give it 12 if hyperbolic rating scales hadn't stopped being clever long ago.

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