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The Proposal sees the powerhouses that are Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds pairing up to bring a romantic comedy that aims to stand out in a crowded genre and for me this does not stand out massively but also does what it is designed to really well.
The premise of the film is that Margaret Tate (played brilliantly by Sandra Bullock) has been working for a book publisher but now finds herself without a job and on the verge of being deported due to an expired Visa and so she needs to try to convince Andrew Paxton (the excellent Ryan Reynolds), her assistant, to marry her to enable her to remain in the US. Not being used to not getting her own way she finds herself needing to have the help of someone else and so not being in complete control over the situation but can she convince Andrew to help her and convince the US immigration officer named Mr. Gilbertson (Denis O''Hare) who is doubting her claims that she is for real when she is actually not?
The film sees a number of good comedy moments and obviously has the usual twists and turns throughout which makes it something well worth watching. The chemistry between Bullock and Reynolds is good and this really does help the film to be able to develop the story in a believable way rather than having the audience sitting and being frustrated by something that feels really unbelievable.
Overall if I could give 3.5 stars I would as I feel that this is edging more towards 4 stars than 3 and so this is why I have ultimately gone for 4 stars overall.
The proposal tells the story of margaret, played by the wonderful Sandra Bullock, a Canadian book publisher who is on the verge of being deported from America as her visa is about to expire. Not wanting to leave, she blackmails her assistant Andrew, Ryan Reynolds, to marry her so she can get a greencard. Andrew has worked hard for her for years in the hopes of one day becoming an editor, so he feels as if he has no choice but to go ahead with her insane plan, even though he faces a hefty prison sentence if they get found out.
Their immigration officer is suspicious of them from the offset. They know they have to make it look official, so they go to Alaska to tell Andrews family. Immediately his mum and grandmother make Margaret welcome, but we see the dysfunctional relationship Andrew has with his father.
We also see Andrews ex girlfriend Gertrude, who he obviously still has feelings for.
Margaret lost her family a long time ago and seeing Andrew with his family she realises what he has sacrificed by working for her and what he stands to lose if they go ahead with the fake marriage. She falls for Andrew and feels guilty for what she has put him through. So will she go ahead with the wedding?
Anyone who has seen the film will remember the dog and the eagle bit. If you haven't, you need to watch the film just to see what I am talking about.
Also, any film starring the legendary Betty White is worth a watch.
I watch this film over and over again - it never gets old. It may be a little cheesy and a tad predictable but it is still hilarious and touching.
I am a huge fan of romantic comedy films much to my husband's horror and The Proposal is certainly one of my all time favourites. This film is one that I did see at the cinema when it was released and have watched countless times since, in fact I have it recorded on my sky box and think it is my most watched film.
This film portrays Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock) as a pushy boss within a publishing company who convinces her overworked assistant Andrew Paxton (Ryan Rynolds) to agree to marrying her when she is told that she is facing deportation back to Canada due to her visa expiring.
And so the story continues with Margaret and Andrew having to convince everyone that they are a real couple in love. This becomes especially difficult when Margaret agrees to accompany Andrew on a visit to his family in Alaska for his Gammy's (Gran's) 90th Birthday party. Gammy is played by Betty White and really adds the sweetness factor in the film as she is a witty and straight talking lady who is certainly the matriarch of the family.
Obviously this would not be a rom com without the couple actually finding themselves falling for each other so it is a little predictable but for me this is fine as I enjoy an easy to watch film. There are some hilarious moments in the film and also frequent sarcastic comments which certainly made me chuckle. The film flows well and I did not find myself loosing interest at all.
The characters are all very likable, and I was especially surprised by Sandra Bullock as she is not an actress that I have ever been particularly fond off and although her character is quite harsh you are soon given an insight into her hidden sensitive side which made me warm to her throughout the film. Also for the ladies Ryan Reynolds is very pleasing on the eye and is certainly a big attraction for me in this film, especially the shower scene!
The film was released in 2009, was written by Pete Chiarelli and directed by Anne Fletcher. The film has a 12 rating which I personally think is appropriate as there is no offensive language and apart from the shower scene which is quite tactfully done there is nothing to make this film eligible for a higher rating.
As this film as been out for sometime it is able to be purchased on DVD for quite a reasonable price for around £3.00 new on Amazon.
What a great film. I was browsing my local used and exchange store and found this for £3 but I have since seen it on amazon for £3.67 brand new with free delivery...grrr!
I usually steer clear of romantic comedies, but sometimes it's just what's needed.
Anyway I took it home and decided to watch it that evening and boy did it cheer me up, it was laugh out loud funny. The story begins with an "alpha female" Margaret played by Sandra Bullock on the brink of deportation. In order not to risk her career by being deported she convinces or rather coerces her long suffering assistant Andrew, played by Ryan Reynolds, into becoming her husband. This leads to many comical situations and I found myself laughing out loud it was so funny. The two main characters complemented each other wonderfully and equally without one over shadowing the other which can sometimes happen. Both Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds played their roles wonderfully and very convincingly, both are extremely entertaining. However I have found Sandra Bullock to be a great actress in all the films I have seen her in.
The comedy really begins when Andrew is forced to take Margaret to visit his parents who live in Alaska of all places. Not a place you would expect Margaret to fit in. This as you can imagine creates new problems for the pair as they need to convince everyone they are genuinely in love.
This film is pure entertainment without being pretentious. The story line isn't designed for scrutiny or dissection and it isn't Shakespeare, it's a simple story line but where the writers have succeeded is in using this simple story line and injecting an enormous amount of humour.
My favourite cast member is Betty White who plays the Grandma. I remember her from the golden girls and find her very endearing as well as entertaining. She has this effervescent demeanour which complements the rest of the cast admirably.
The film is directed by Anne Fletcher and written by Peter Chiarelli both of which have succeeded in making a fantastic simple, light hearted feel good movie that makes you laugh.
The dvd is classified as 12 which I consider appropriate, although there is only one scene where they have no clothes on and you see nothing at all, it's all very discretely done, and the emphasis is on the comedy not on the romance, although obviously the romance has an influence. The great thing about this movie as a romantic comedy is it's not overly corny which some movies in this genre have a tendency to be, and I think that anyone could enjoy this.
This is a thoroughly enchanting film that keeps you smiling.
Overall I think this film is fantastic and I thought it was a perfect film for cheering you up if you're down. I would definitely recommend this movie.
Canadian Margaret lives for her high powdered job as a book editor in a large firm in New York. She eats sleeps and lives for work and is known by her fellow employees as a tough cookie and a bit of a bitch and in short no one likes her for it!
Her put upon assistant Andrew is equally dedicated to his job as he has dreams of his own to have a book one day published to which he has written already, shown her it and shes poo pooed it and shot it down in flames. There relationship is not a good one and its simply him pleasing her in work capacity with very little thought given to him or recognition.
However one day Margaret finds out she is to be deported back to Canada as her visa is about expire and so comes up with a madcap idea to marry Andrew, blackmailing him virtually into it to which he goes along with it, but it isn't going to be easy cos he don't like her much lol.
They have to be seen together, convince people they are really a couple and so first stop is a sleepy village where his family lives as its his Gammys (Grandmothers) 90th birthday (Betty White, Rose from the Golden Girls) and at first it looks like pulling off their fake relationship in front of his family my be a little tough as the pair are not really all that keen on eachother at all. However the two have to share a bedroom and within that room they start to get to know one another. What drives Margaret to be the way she is? How come Andrews family is so rich and powerful yet he went to work for someone else in a big city when he could of worked for the huge family business which his father wants him to take part in and could these two people actually begin to understand eachother and become friends?
The scenery is stunning for this film and Ryan Reynolds who plays Andrew I was impressed with, he really is a bit of a hunk and Sandra Bullock manages to play Margaret really well, which is actually odd me saying that as I am not usually a big Sandra fan to be honest. Betty White who plays Gammy steals the show for the most part though as a real pro with great comedy timing and she really did make me laugh.
This actually isn't a bad little comedy, predictable yes but very laugh out loud funny in parts and the film never felt liked it dragged its heels. Margaret trying to feed the family pet to an eagle to get her mobile back off it and when she and Andrew are naked not knowing the other is there and ending up on top of eachother is rather funny moments and for the ladies you get a chest shot of super buff Ryan Reynolds and for the guys (and some ladies of course) a really half naked and wet Sandra!
This has a runtime of 103 minutes and is rated 12 and although its not one I would watch time and time again it was worth a watch!
This review is also posted on Ciao under this same username.
This is a film only review.
Sometimes I am just in the mood for a good romcom and tonight was one such occasion! I actually saw this film at the cinema when it came out in 2009 but I I had forgotten the details of it so I was happy to watch it again on TV. It definitely stands up to a second watching in my opinion and was just as enjoyable the second time.
The Proposal stars Ryan Reynolds as Andrew and Sandra Bullock as Margaret. Both are talented actors and I usually find that most Sandra Bullock romcoms tend to be ones I really enjoy, such as While You Were Sleeping, Two Weeks' Notice, Miss Congeniality and various others, so I expected to like this from the first time I saw the trailer.
The premise of this film can be summed up as follows: Margaret is a very successful editor at a New York publishing house and lives to work. She is seen as a bit of a dragon in the workplace and generally hated and feared by the office, including her assistant, Andrew. She is Canadian and unfortunately she has not made time to sort out her immigration papers, so one day she is told she is going to be deported. She then hatches a plan to pretend that she is engaged to be married to Andrew as he is American and this would allow her to stay in the country and not have to leave her job. This sounds a bit over the top and silly, but I thought it was quite a good idea for a story and it provides opportunities for some absolute hilarity. The two go to the immigration office to let them know about their engagement and are grilled about whether it is a sham. The officer threatens that he will be on their tail, ready to expose the truth so he can send Margaret back to Canada and Andrew to jail... with this threat in mind, they head to Andrew's family in Alaska, hoping to do a good impression of being in love. As they get to know each other better and run into various obstacles, will they or won't they get married?
The ending is a bit predictable but I won't spell it out as I don't want to ruin it for anyone!
The two main characters are quite likeable and I really warm to Margaret as the film goes on. When she spends time with Andrew and his family she is a bit aloof at first but starts to open up and show some personality and vulnerability. Andrew starts as a bit weak but he learns to stand up to Margaret, ending up more as equals than boss and assistant. The banter between the two starts a bit awkward and gets more and more natural as they become comfortable with each other. There is a part at a family party where they are asked to tell the story of the proposal and have to make it up on the spot, which is extremely funny.
Andrew's family add a lot of colour to story, with his grandma being really hilarious and adding some great moments to the film. She is sweet and kind but a bit zany, as shown by scenes like her "giving thanks" in the wood and chanting, where she gets Margaret to join her dancing around the fire! Ramone, a local in the small Alaskan town, is also a big personality. He seems to take on so many different jobs and crops up throughout. He is played by the actor who is Oscar in the American version of The Office and I found it so funny to see him in this different and more over the top role.
There is some gorgeous scenery in the film due to the fact Andrew's family live in the Alaskan countryside. Their house is amazing and they have to take a speedboat to get to the nearest town. It makes me want to visit there as it looks breathtaking. However, I looked up the location and have just read that the house in the film is not actually in Alaska as the film says, but is in fact in Massachussetts and some of the scenery is faked. It is done really well and I would never have been able to tell. I was actually gobsmacked when I read this just now!
This film is not intended to be deep or serious, so if you just take it as the lighthearted rom com it is intended to be, you should enjoy it and I definitely did. The relationship slowly develops in a heartwarming way which makes me smile even if it is not really realistic as such. I am a sucker for this sort of thing and I love the romantic parts of the film.
I have been a bit disappointed by some romcoms over the last few years as I thought they didn't have enough comedy in them or they were just a bit flat - not this one though. This is a classic romcom just how I like them! Recommended.
Margaret Tate is a highly strung workaholic whose long suffering assistant Andrew has to run around doing her errands. When Margaret's visa is about to run out she faces being deported back to Canada from America. She asks Andrew the ultimate request of marrying her so she can get residency in the states. Not wanting to lose his job, Andrew grudgingly agrees as long as Margaret will promote him. With the proposal in place the pair take off for the weekend to visit Andrew's family in Alaska. This is where most of the action happens and the two have to pretend to be a loved up couple.
Sandra Bullock plays Margaret, while Ryan Reynolds is Andrew. She is great as the overbearing boss breathing down Andrew's neck. He matches her with his changing character that makes the transition from underdog to having the upper hand without being too smug as to make the viewer dislike him. The supporting cast are mostly recognisable faces including Betty White, who plays Andrew's loveable Granma Annie.
Before watching this I was a bit sceptical as I thought the plot sounded like things that had been done before and indeed similar things have been done. Having said this, I really enjoyed the film anyway because of the way this one came across. Yes, it was predictable but that didn't really bother me. I did however think that the film seemed really long when watching it, but perhaps that was just me. I would recommend it as a good watch, especially if you are fond of either of the leads as they play great roles in this.
The soundtrack to this film is quite a random selection that is more understandable when you have seen the film. I wouldn't say I was that impressed. Two of the songs, 'Relax' and 'It takes two' are performed by Sandra Bullock during comedic moments in the film.
Released in 2009
Runnning time: 108 minutes
Age Certificate: 12
Available for £4.34 (Amazon 23/04/12)
As a 23 year old heterosexual male who bought this DVD for £4 I was expecting it to be below average at best and to fill in a quiet Thursday night after work. I thought it may raise a smile once in a while and for it to be put at the bottom of the DVD piles when finished but I was wrong. This is one of a small number of romantic comedy films that I like. Funny, witty, well acted and slightly engrossing.
Sandra Bullock stars a cruel, strict and demanding book publishing editor showing little emotion and care for any of her work colleagues but who is highly regarded as one of the best in her field when it comes to her career. With no family or friends she is career driven and doesn't have another care in the world. Ryan Reynolds, her assistant for numerous years, hates her with a passion but works hard to please her in the hope of one day becoming editor.
When Bullocks character is threatened with being deported to Canada she blackmails Reynolds into marrying her so she can stay in America and continue working. The story develops from there but I won't go into any more detail and give away the plot (not that there is much of one).
Although the story isn't original and the ending is as predictable as every other rom-com out there is, the film still provides plenty of laughs along the way. Bullock and Reynolds play their characters well but it's not stretching their talents by any means. All in all this is a pretty good movie.
I would highly recommend it as an easy watching film that will provide good entertainment any night of the week for the whole family.
3.5 out of 5
In this day and age with the 24 hour supermarkets that have expanded their merchandise to include DVDs at a very reasonable price, I am sure that DVD rental shops must be dropping like flies, especially since you can now buy a DVD for the same as it costs to rent a film for one night, it might not necessarily be a good film that you buy, but it'll be yours to keep for as long as you want it and therefore is justified. This is exactly what I do these days; if there is nothing on at the cinema but me and my boyfriend want to watch a film, we'll pop down to Tesco and buy one and this is how we came to watch The Proposal.
FILM ONLY REVIEW
The Proposal stars two very well known actors Sandra Bullock (Miss Congeniality, Two Weeks Later) and Ryan Reynolds (Green Lantern, Van Wilder; Party Liaison) who together make this film what it is, without them it might not have been so good.
Margaret (Sandra Bullock) is a high flying Editor for a publishing company in New York. Her cold hearted attitude and controlling persona has ensured that she is feared and despised by her colleagues and her poor, long suffering assistant Andrew (Ryan Reynolds) who seems to be employed to meet her every demand and is there at her beck and call. Right from the beginning of this film you know that something will happen between these two. Margaret is then hit with the news that she is on the verge of being deported back to Canada where she is from and would therefore lose the one thing that means the most to her.....her career.
In desperation Margaret informs her Boss that her and Andrew are engaged to be married and the Charade begins. With only a few short days to convince an immigration officer; who threatens serious action should they be found guilty of going through with a fake marriage, Andrew makes some career progressing demands of his own and they fly to Alaska to introduce Margaret to his family and convince them that they are a couple who are truly in love.
Do they get married? Are they found out? I'm not going to give the rest of the story away but I will say that this is typically predictable romcom that is heart warming yet laugh out loud funny and will at times have you cringing behind your popcorn! Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds make an interesting duo as they are not two people that I wouldn't have chosen to put together, but they make it work. Sandra Bullock I feel is an excellent actress when it comes to comedies and she didn't disappoint, while Ryan Reynolds definitely provides a bit of eye candy.
The fact that you can pretty much predict the way things are going to go in this film doesn't bother me at all, I enjoyed the film and to me, that's all that matters. It is a great film for a girly DVD night with a bottle of wine, the boyfriend didn't enjoy it as much as I did - I think he would have preferred something la bit more manly but having said that I did see him chuckling away throughout the film.
Overall I think it is a lovely light hearted romcom that deserves a place in my DVD collection. As long as you are prepared for predictability, a bit of cliché and you're not expecting anything new, I think this film is worth watching and will be enjoyed by any romcom lover!
We have a DVD rental service, and get a couple of DVDs sent to us every month for us to watch. The proposal is one of those that has sat on the list for a while, and arrived with us a couple of weekends ago for us to watch. We have seen the trailer for the film a number of times and knew what to expect. A romantic comedy with Sandra Bullock doing what she does best. She does seem to have done a few of these roles, and it is not like she is not capable of more as she has done it in other films, but she is comfy, and it works well.
The plot here is quite a simple one. Sandra Bullock is Margaret Tate, a high powered Canadian Editor working for a New York publishing house. On the surface, she is very hard nosed, and entirely focussed on her career. She demands perfection from her staff, who fear and loathe her. Whenever she moves round the building there is a flurry of instant messages between computers to let the staff know 'the witch' is on the move. Her Assistant is Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds) who has ambition to one day be an editor, and he has spent a couple of years working around the clock to keep her approval and further his career prospects.
Margaret is threatened with deportation as her working Visa has expired, and she comes up with the idea of a 'fake' marriage to her assistant to stay in the country and be able to keep her job.
A visit to immigration makes it clear that if they are lying, they face tough penalties, so to prove they are a couple they take a trip to Andrew's parents house in Alaska, where they have a few days to convince everyone they are a real couple, and for Margaret to get to know the answers to the questions they will be asked to prove they are a couple. The whole premise to the movie is if they will convince everyone, and if they will in fact be able to go ahead with a phoney wedding.
Overall, the film works, although most of the laugh out loud funny parts are actually in the trailer. Oh don't you hate it when that happens? The characters of Andrew and Margaret are believable, and there is some chemistry there between them as the film goes on.
It is one of those films that just work for a lazy Saturday evening with your other half. There is not a lot to think about, so i can sit there knitting without wondering what is going on as i have not listened well enough. There were enough funny moments to get us through the entire film, and the ending was not too sopppy.
I'm glad i watched it, but it is not the sort of film you would watch more than once. Good music, some cringeworthy scenes like the hen party stripper, but overall it left us with a good feeling of a chilled Saturday night well spent.
Not as good as films like speed, but not a complete waste of your time.
As a journalist, review writing usually comes natural to me, and I never really take too long over choosing the angle. When I came to review The Proposal though, I was stumped.
I have been staring at this empty screen for a while now, and i'm still no further forward. In fact, i'm only telling you this in the hope that it triggers a spate of deliverance and I get the urge to write something.
It's not that i'm lazy, nor is it because I can't be bothered, I think it's just that as films go, there wasn't really a lot to mention about that one.
It's a simple case of' boss makes assistant marry her so she won't get deported'. Yes, I can almost hear the sound of you mind, ''thrilling'', it's saying.
Will they get away with it? Will they go through with it? Will they move to Alaska and live happily ever after? I won't tell you that, but it does leave me with a slight conundrum. There's not a lot else I can say.
I watched this film, as I do with all films, hoping to be wowed. You wouldn't watch a film hoping to be bored by its poor quality, would you? Quite simply though, I wasn't.
As the cover suggests, with its frilly red writing, slightly feminine male and ounces of empty space, it's a rom-com. Rom-com's need to be romantic and comedic though don't they? Why wasn't this then?
Harbouring a spoonful of smiles, it was hardly what i'd call a comedy. Equally so, it wasn't the most romantic film i've ever seen either. And thus, I have my problem. Well, it's problem really. It's a good film, a fair film, but there's just nothing really that good to say about it.
It's not terrible, but you do really want more from a film. It's the sort of movie that will slip away in the vaults of time and never really be remembered for anything.
It could have been so much more, too. Starring Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds, it's hardly the budget-scalp of the century. They've got the actors, just not the storylines. Heck, it even has Golden Girl Betty White in it, but even she couldn't revive it too much.
I will say one positive, though it's probably not the one you're likely to expect: It had some tremendous scenery. Granted it was filmed in Massachusetts and not the storyline's Alaska, it still offered beautiful mountains and greenery every now and then.
That's a good trait to have, but you ideally want it as an extra, not as your main highlight.
I'm nearing the end of the review now, and part of me wonders how we ever got this far. Oddly though, I don't even dislike the film as much as you might think. I just dislike the fact that is appears to have nothing to show for itself, nothing to offer from a reviewers point of view. It won't ever go near a 'favourite film' list i'm sure, but all it needed was a few more giggles, a cleverer plot, a more believable main duo and it'd have been fine.
By all means watch it, as it won't be around forever, but I highly doubt that you'll be dying to tell someone all about it afterwards. You might have a sentence of two to sum it up, but that's about it really.
Okay, so this film isn't my usual cuppa tea. I can be forgiven because I think rom-com / chick-flick style films have their place when you're in the mood for something cheesy, and Sandra Bullock is usually able to pull a film up a few notches. This film was pretty much as I had expected; clichéd and cheesy, and yet strangely watchable.
The Proposal introduces us to two main characters who form the centre of the film: Margaret (Sandra Bullock), a hard-nosed book editor who makes others in the office fearful of her, and her always-wanting-to-please assistant Andrew (Ryan Reynolds). Margaret is suddenly thrown into a nightmare predicament as a Canadian facing deportation, and thus being removed from her job. She's a workaholic, determined to do whatever it takes to stay where she is and get what she wants.
What would any rational person do in such a situation? Fake an engagement of course! Before we know it Margaret has blackmailed Andrew into agreeing to lying to authorities and going along with a sham wedding. If he doesn't, of course, he'll suffer also with the loss of his boss. Andrew wants a promotion that he's longed for for ages, Margaret wants to stay where she is. A fake marriage should fix the deportation problem, providing family, friends and authorities believe the hoax.
Of course, things don't go that smoothly. For a start, Margaret is so cold and detached from her assistant and others in the office, in fact, detached from people in general, that the concept of her being able to spend enough 'quality time' with Andrew to pull of the sham doesn't look hopeful. The two jet off to his family in Alaska, far from the world Margaret is used to, and attempt to play their roles as the happy, in-love couple only a stones throw away from their wedding.
I won't give anymore away, but it's easy to see the sort of direction this film will take. Nothing was too surprising or original about the plot, and the ending I had predicted from the start came into its sickly sweet fruition just as I was about to put a fork in my eye. Having said that, the lack of thought involved on my part meant it was fairly easy to watch. It wasn't mind-numbing because Bullock and Reynolds kept things feeling fresh, lively and sometimes comical.
The humour wasn't altogether too original either, and I don't think I raised any chuckles out loud, but it was enough to keep the film feeling light-hearted and watchable.
The cast was very well done on the whole and featured some familiar faces : Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock), Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds), Grace Paxton as his mother (Mary Steenburgen, who I recognised from Desperate Housewives), his father Joe (Craig T Nelson), grandmother Annie (Betty White), and others (including Dennis O'Hare and Malin Akerman as Ryan's old flame Gertrude).
This flick was actually nominated for a Golden Globe amongst 13 other nominations and 3 wins, which I found quite surprising. Having said that, it did have a high quality feel to it because it seemed well-finished with a decent cast and settings.
The bottom line is that these two start as quite distanced, get on each other's nerves and then reconcile. It's what we see coming but as long as you're prepared for the cheese and cliché then it's not too bad if you like your rom-coms. It reminded me a bit of films like the Devil Wears Prada, because of Margaret's workaholic attitude, so I can see why this has its appeal for easy and light-hearted viewing.
2009, rated certificate 12, 103 minutes running time.
RRP £17.99 but selling on Amazon for £3.49.
With Valentines Day just around the corner and with no love in my life at this moment I felt it right to pull out a cheesy Romantic Comedy and chill with a bottle of beer in my hand. You see I'm going to let you in on a very dark secret ladies, men do in fact love 'chick flicks', but for obvious reasons, pride, ego, macho prowess to name but a few, we simply cannot let ourselves admit that when we are alone, sometimes it is nice to stick on a predictable no-brainer and choke back the tears when you know that happy ending is about to rear it's ugly head. Released in 2009, The Proposal was released to worldwide success but limited positive appraise. Is this a chick flick one too many? Is it simply just too predictable?
Introduce Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock), a no excuses, hard whipped, emotionless editor for a huge Book Publisher. Her employees dislike and fear her when she walks through the door. Imagine her surprise when she realises that her Visa to stay in America has expired and she has been sentenced to leave and head back to her native Canada. Introduce Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds), Tate's personal assistant and the perfect victim to blackmail. He longs to have his manuscript published and has worked for Tate for the past three years and is dismayed to hear she has rejected his novel. Threatening to destroy his potential career Tate forces Paxton to agree to marry him in a sham wedding meaning she can stay in America and keep her cushy job and large paycheque.
Forced to visit his family up in Sitka, Alaska the 'couple' must learn to get to know each other in order to pass the Immigration test as well as fooling Paxton's family long enough to make it up the aisle. As one can imagine, this is not an easy feat as things goes horribly wrong when they are forced out of their comfort zone and see each other for who they really are. Will the truth emerge or will they end up marrying each other? I won't spoil the ending for you.
I think it is obvious to say that yes this is in fact a true chick flick at heart, predictable and unoriginal. You can almost second guess what is going to happen next and the sham wedding to avoid deportation is a story been told many, many times before. I've got to say though that at times, there is nothing wrong with predictability. It is comforting to know that you don't need to engage in a complex story and in fact films don't always need an intriguing, complicating, twisting storyline to be enjoyable. However, I would go as far as to say that the storyline here is not what gives us the enjoyment factor. That comes from many other factors that gel this foreseeable Romcom into an easy flowing piece of easy viewing.
One of the better parts of this film is unsurprisingly Sandra Bullock who gives us a wonderful character. This film in itself is pretty much what we've come to expect from Bullock, but it is so refreshing to see her play a sort of Devil Wears Prada kind of role, where she is cold and bitter. Her sarcasm too is also biting and at times so witty and humorous and mix that with an almost snobby kind of clumsiness and you get a stereotype; true, but an engaging one at that. Two memorable scenes are firstly where she has her mobile phone stolen by an eagle and uses the family puppy as bait to try and receive it back (Cold) and secondly where she is using a computer and a dial up tone for the internet can be heard and she is completely clueless as to what it is (snobby clumsiness).
I don't think Ryan Reynolds is as strong here compared to his compatriot, but maybe that's because he plays the victim in all of this. The nice guy who gets blackmailed, the poor sap who obviously is in love with another woman but cannot do anything about it in order to salvage whatever he can from his career. His character is not without sarcasm too and at times matches Bullock in delivering witty lines with ease. I think the problem with his character is that for a chick flick he is just a little too predictable, which can overall come across a little one dimensional. Despite this, their chemistry is amazing. They play their roles really convincingly and they just suit each other really well. They play almost polar opposite characters that create this special sort of magic that charms the viewers and allows us to follow their progress. It is because of all of this that we can forgive that by the time the film starts to come to an end they realise that they actually are in love with each other.
As aforementioned sarcasm is heavily used to create the comedy aspect to this film, but silliness and covered up sexual references also play a big part too. Gammy (Betty White) Andrew's Grandmother is an unforgettable character. There is a fantastic scene in where she is overly excited about the presence of a male stripper and even resorts to telling Bullock to 'Smack his ass'. It's almost unbelievable yet not so farfetched either and that is where the true humour comes from. Nudity does come into it at one point, a non sexualised scene in where Bullock is getting out of the shower and falls into a naked Reynolds who is going to go for a shower. The humour comes from the repulsion towards one another.
What was a little surprising to find in here are some fantastic atmospherical backdrops and clips of the Alaskan mountains with lush green growing upon it whilst the wispy mist rising from the valleys below create a dreamy paradise. I assume these cinematic shots are what rose the $40 million budget up. Despite being pretty breathtaking they are a little random in appearing at intervals within the film.
If I were to mention one 'bad' point to the film, then I would definitely mention the inclusion of Gertrude (Malin Akerman) Andrew's ex girlfriend. They make an issue that its obvious he still loves her, maybe to make you feel that little more sorry for him that he is being forced to marry someone he 'loathes' and cannot be with who he really does have feelings for, yet she is not in it for long and this side sort of story never really takes off, never really progresses and it does make you think well what's the point? It was also obvious that the relationship between Andrew and his father (Craig T. Nelson) was going to be strained. I would have loved to see maybe the mother son relationship have tension, something that maybe would have lifted this from just your average predictable chick flick into something a little more surprising and original.
The DVD enjoys its usual list of subtitle delights and the standard will give you an uninspiring audio commentary where as the blu ray feature will give you some deleted scenes and an alternate ending. The extra bonus features on the blu ray version is definitely not enough to fork out the extra price tag.
Overall I must admit I thoroughly enjoyed The Proposal with its memorable laughs and quirky sarcasm. Think Devil Wears Prada meets 13 Going on 30. This is Bullock at her Romcom best to be quite frank and yes it is unoriginal, but remember that is good sometimes. It flows very well, isn't too long to be unbearable and I guarantee many laughs can be had with this film. I wouldn't pay full price for it mind you, but if you see it for a few quid, it's definitely worth the money. Guys, if you aren't going to do the real proposing this year, but what a nice little gift to keep the lady in your life happy without being bored stiff yourself, opt for this, trust me.
The Proposal is the kind of movie Cary Grant used to make, or Spencer Tracy with Katherine Hepburn, or Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, it's about Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock) a Canadian Editor working in New York, she lives for work and is renowned as a real ball breaker, her assistant Andrew (Ryan Reynolds) refers to her as the witch, because she is just so nasty. However, little does he know how far she will go to maintain her role as the bane of his life!
Margaret doesn't have a Green Card and is due to be deported back to Canada unless she gets married, she therefore blackmails the diligent Andrew into proposing for convenience, implying that if he doesn't marry her then his career will be over.
Andrew agrees but on the proviso that Margaret must meet his family as he could never marry without telling them and letting him meet his bride. The film follows Margaret and Andrew as they visit his family, will Margaret and Andrew accept that some things are more important than work, or will they go through with the wedding to maintain their careers?
Sandra Bullock ... Margaret Tate
Ryan Reynolds ... Andrew Paxton
Mary Steenburgen ... Grace Paxton
Craig T. Nelson ... Joe Paxton
Betty White ... Grandma Annie
Denis O'Hare ... Mr. Gilbertson
Malin Akerman ... Gertrude
Oscar Nuñez ... Ramone
Aasif Mandvi ... Bob Spaulding
Michael Nouri ... Chairman Bergen
Michael Mosley ... Chuck
Dale Place ... Jim McKittrick
I watched this film as I find Romantic Comedies a pleasant enough way to wile away a couple of hours, I like Bullock, she has a strong screen presence and is liked by both men and women, as well as being very funny. I also find Reynolds good value, he is funny and doesn't go over the top but always seems to put his own personality into his films. Matching these two together works really well, they do have good screen chemistry and something quite old school in their double act, as I say, reminding me of the old Cary Grant or Tracy/Hepburn films, in as such as it begins with two people who hate each other, but their close proximity and a few life lessons lead them to understand that perhaps their only love's rise from their only hates (TM Bill Shakespeare!).
When the couple fly up to Alaska to meet Andrew's family, the film really starts to become quite likeable, as we meet Andrew's parents, Grace and Joe (Mary J Steenburgen and Craig T Nelson), and his crazy gran (Betty White).
The film is utterly predictable, you won't have a sixth sense style ending here, in the laws of rom-com's you know that beneath the sparring and verbal jousting some fireworks are setting off in the characters hearts and a bond is developing. It isn't clever and isn't done in a way that could be described as new or original, but it sticks to the Romantic Comedy ethic, of having enough diverting characters, a couple of situations that require them to see each other naked, or showing their sensitivity or other skills they've never displayed, and there we have it, like the recipe for a decent soup, so long as you get the right ingredients and mix them in the prescribed manner, it's pretty hard to get this wrong.
I liked the film, I liked Bullock, she's difficult to comprehend as a steely boss, because you just wait for her to do something goofy or sweet, while Reynolds is all wise cracking charm, with a heart of gold, it's hard to dislike them really, like a puppy or a newborn baby, both are inoffensive and funny. Mary J Steenbergen is also incredibly sweet as Andrew's mother, she has a charm and screen presence and you can really appreciate how Margaret is drawn into the whole family situation when she meets such a lovely person. Until recently i've seen more of Mary J in Curb Your Enthusiasm than in films and it's good to see her flexing her movie acting muscles again.
Craig T Nelson is the strong silent type as always, the only element I felt they got slightly wrong was Betty White, there seems to be a school of thought that she is some kind of screen goddess, but I have to say apart from scenes in Family Guy and Ugly Betty, i've not seen too much of her since Golden Girls, she is fine, but at times her popping up on screen spoils the flow of the film and it feels like she's trying to scene steal, but doesn't really have the skills to do it, other than by overpowering everyone else by having the loudest voice. Although this is a small quibble, she is fine and funny, but I just felt like everytime she walked on screen you expected an audience to start whooping reverentially. Her part in an Indian dance which becomes skewed somewhat into a misogynistic dance about girls with big bottoms is very funny indeed.
Oscar Nunez (From the Office, an American Workplace) is good as Ramone the local store owner and the only stripper in this Alaskan town, his striptease is hilarious as are some of his scenes with Bullock, Malene Ackerman is underused as Andrew's ex girlfriend who does little but is in many shots.
The film is old fashioned fun and doesn't try to hard to disguise this, the characters are fun, the plot is fun if not totally predictable and as the characters warm up to each other you'll warm up to them and the story, this film will not change your life, it won't even change your day, but it will make you smile and while away a couple of hours quite easily.
Funniest Moment in the film:
Sandra Bullock dancing hilariously chanting rap lyrics when asked to perform an American Indian Dance.
Best Line in the Film
Do you prefer Margaret or "Satan's Mistress"?
The DVD is available on Amazon for £3.98
The Proposal is a film that I wanted to watch when it was in the cinema but I just never got round to it so I added it to my lovefilm list and waited for it to be delivered. It finally arrived this week and I was really pleased to see it come through my letterbox and resolved to watch it that same night.
This film is based on two main characters, Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock), who is the boss of Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds). Margaret is an editor and Andrew is her assistant. The story centres around the fact that Margaret is from Canada and she risks being deported back to there from the USA as her visa has been denied. She then comes up with a rather impromptu plan to marry Andrew to allow her to stay in the USA.
I felt that this film caught my attention from the off as Margaret seemed like a real fire breather and your typical boss type figure who is a little mean and loves themselves just a little too much because they are quite good at what they do. Margaret seems quite pushy and will always get what she wants in the end so Andrew feels like it's better just to get on with things and do whatever he can to keep her happy. He is the type of person who is always swept along with life and will just agree to whatever to keep the peace.
This film was one that I thoroughly enjoyed watching and I felt that the scenes were well thought out and well acted. There were some real laugh out loud moments during this film and I enjoyed it a lot more than I initially thought that I would. There were parts of the film that I found to be a little bit predictable but this is quite common if you like a particular genre isn't it so I wasn't disappointed by that. I felt that both Sandra & Ryan brought something unique to their parts and Sandra acted out her character fantastically.
Some of the moments in the film showed quite a bit of emotion (varying kinds) and I felt that both actors really acted this out fantastically and I could almost experience the emotions that they were going through which is always something I enjoy when watching a film. I want to really feel like I am there with my characters and going through things with them. It's nice to escape real life for a little while and this film certainly helped!
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this film and while the ending was a little predictable from almost the onset of the film, I would definitely recommend it and be happy to watch it again in the future. My copy was a rental copy with run time of 108 minutes which was just long enough to keep my attention. I did not watch any of the special features or anything else so I cannot comment on whether this DVD had any as I just turned it on and watched it straight away.