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Novocaine (Widescreen)

Steve Martin , Helena Bonham Carter , David Atkins    R (Restricted)   DVD
2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 20.25 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Product Description

Martin/Carter/Dern ~ Novocaine

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Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Movie, but Not Quite as Advertised Jan. 20 2004
This film is one of those cross-genre movies that must drive marketing people nuts. Part murder mystery, part erotic suspense thriller, part black comedy, the marketing people took one look at this, saw Steve Martin, and called it comedic. Really, it's more ironic than comedic. The situations in which people find themselves, from Laura Dern's OCD fiancee to Steve Martin's repressed dentist caught up in a spiraling web of deceit are definitely not funny in the traditional sense, and I am sure that is what put many people off about the film.
Despite the unsavory elements of the story and only average acting from otherwise good actors, the story holds the audience's interest, subtlely foreshadowing the climax, which unfortunately "pays off" all too quickly after the amount of work that goes into setting it up.
This, plus the aforementioned average acting and dark storyline are the primary reasons that this movie is usually found in the bargain bin. Still, Helena Bonham Carter is definitely worth watching as a drug addict, abused by her incestuous brother. Some of the character's dress and actions are vaguely reminiscent of her portrayal of Marla Singer in Fight Club, and she remains sufficiently tortured throughout the film to add a slightly deeper layer to the film.
Not for the squeamish (or dentist averse), the film has an ironic but "happy" ending that leaves the viewer a bit unsettled, mainly because it ends a little too cleanly. Not Steve Martin's best work, by far, but certainly an amusing diversion.
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Novocaine is a film that promised so much given the talented actors attached to it,Steve Martin, Helena Bonham-Carter and Laura Dern and delivered so little.
The main problem of course lies squarely with a very weak and over the top script that tried so hard to explore the comedy and thriller with a twist genres, but was clearly lost between the two.
Black Comedy is a very peculiar genre,and the term can be quite misleading.Genuine black comedy films are very few and far between, for it takes quite a special talent to write hidden,subtle and ironic humour.
Also,the problem with Novocaine lies with a very mediocre direction from first timer David Atkins, who annoyed the 'fillings' out of me with his numerous x-rays cuts.
The whole plot just does not make any sense,
A dentist (Martin) with a loyal fiance(Dern),suddenly,at the very first sight and without any plausible explanations falls head over heels for this mysterious patient(Bonham-Carter)and begins an involvement that nearly destroys his life,(one that includes a couple of love scenes,and a topless miss Bonham-Carter!)
See,I know that she is an excellent actress,one of the best Brit exports to American cinema and she has a vulnerable and classic beauty, but not the sensuality, sexiness and allure that drove Dudley Moore mad for Bo Derek in Ten.So,in my opinion,Martin instant infatuation with her character was not believable.
Yet this infatuation leads Martin to all sort of trouble: stolen drugs, Bonham-Carter's over the top psycho brother(a good Scott Caan)whom the writer again for no reason at all decided that he will be having an incestious relationship with his sister, (??!!!!
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1.0 out of 5 stars A horrible, horrible waste of time Oct. 26 2003
This film was such a disappointment. Considering it has Steve Martin, Kevin Bacon, and Helena Bonham Carter - my favorite actress - in it, I would have expected better. But I get nothing.
Steve Martin plays a dentist who is happily engaged to Laura Dern and has a normal life until one day he finds Helena Bonham Carter in his office. He is immediately stricken by her and starts to fantasize about her until finally he has a full fledged affair with her. Now, I would pick Helena Bonham Carter over Laura Dern any day of the week...but when we're introduced to Steve Martin's character as crazy and head over heels for his fiance, having him forget it all just for one woman he knows for about five minutes is poor writing and awful character development.
What follows is a hideous mobius strip of a movie. Steve Martin goes to Helena Bonham Carter, some thing happens, he gets in trouble, and then he goes back to Helena Bonham Carter and every thing starts all over again. This happens a good four or five times. Halfway through the movie you're thinking "When is this going to end?!"
Did I mention Helena Bonham Carter does nudity for this? First why does this movie need nudity, and second was she so bad on finances that she needed to be rolling around on top of Steve Martin? I was almost offended by that.
The only savoring part of this movie is Kevin Bacon playing a famous actor (grand irony) who is one of the most competant people in the movie. Otherwise, I would just avoid this whole mess like your life depended on it.
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3.0 out of 5 stars How Do You Feel About Dentistry? Jan. 13 2003
This is an important question to ask yourself before settling down with this movie. If, like me, you feel you have to pop a few Valiums before you can even consider an exam, pause. The opening credits depict an x-rayed skull that is laughing, chewing, and swallowing and other everyday functions. It should be interesting, somewhat funny and it least clever. I broke out in a sweat.
Steve Martin is a kindly, but obsessed with his profession type who declares and demonstrates his "perfect" world: a flawless dental practice that runs like a well-oiled machine. Much of this perfection is due to his head assistant/fiancée expertly played by Laura Dern. They look to be the perfect match. Everything about her is perfectly organized, and she is undoubtedly the perfect fiancée. The worm in the apple in the form of Helen Bonham-Carter comes in with a raging toothache and a taste for drugs. Steve is instantly smitten as only he can be. Quickly lies, deceit, suspicion and murder follow.
The cast is excellent. Bonham-Carter carries off her waif as a grunge role with charm. Playing her psychotic hoodlum brother, Scott Caan has a menacing, jaunty swaggering charm worthy of his dad, James. The pace is good, even brisk. However, as a comedy noir, there were a few too many episodes that were painful rather than funny (usually connected with teeth.) Only Laura Dern was able to carry the audience in whatever direction she took. Steve Martin seemed more of a pitiable object; you laugh but you feel guilty.
Good, but not memorable.
-sweetmolly-Amazon Reviewer
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Most recent customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't dentists use Lidocaine these days?
Dentist Frank Sangster's (Steve Martin) quiet life is turned upside-down when an odd new patient (Helen Bonham Carter) starts a spiral of drugs, lust, and murder. Read more
Published on May 23 2009 by Kona
5.0 out of 5 stars Je Ne Sais Quoi
Steve, I hope you read reviews! Okay guys: take the characters, take the plot, take the twists and turns, take the sideways no-that-can't-be where-did-that-come-from and throw in a... Read more
Published on July 13 2004 by pattilynch
Novocaine is labeled as a dark comedy in the reviews here, a conclusion I don't necessarily see from the film. Read more
Published on Oct. 19 2003 by Shashank Tripathi
2.0 out of 5 stars fast acting soporific
The difference between watching this movie and actually visiting a dentist is that there is at least far more stimulation with the latter experience and at times less pain. Read more
Published on Feb. 25 2003 by Brian Wallace (Co-author of It's Not Your Hair)
2.0 out of 5 stars Safe for those allergic to nitrous oxide.
WARNING: May induce Novocaine-like cerebral symptoms.
Known to cause slight post-viewing disappointment or indifference. Read more
Published on Dec 19 2002 by T. SIMPSON
3.0 out of 5 stars Comedy noir
Novocaine is the story of Steve Martin playing a dentist who digs himself into a hole of drugs, deceit, and murder, precipitated by a pretty drug dealer (Helena Bonham Carter) who... Read more
Published on Dec 14 2002 by Craig MACKINNON
2.0 out of 5 stars Good performances, barely watchable movie
An unamusing noirish black comedy. Steve Martin plays a dentist who ends up embroiled in sex, drugs and bloody murder when he makes the mistake of prescribing a lethal dose of... Read more
Published on Nov. 19 2002 by BD Ashley
4.0 out of 5 stars Noir Served with Dental Floss
I must admit that I didn't expect too much from this movie, but its noir-lightness delivered. Steve Martin plays a dentist leading a life all too mind-numbingly (as if on... Read more
Published on Oct. 30 2002 by M. Swinney
3.0 out of 5 stars Martin's Dentist Noir!? Not Bad, But Helena Steals it Anyway
Frank is a successful dentist, with a beautiful fiance Jean. But when Frank is played by Steve Martin, Frank is going to have some trouble, just as he did in "Little Shop of... Read more
Published on Oct. 1 2002 by Tsuyoshi
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