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Third Rate Simon
on February 21, 2004
I am a big fan of Neil Simon (also Woody Allen and Mel Brooks). But I didn't like this movie when it came out, and I didn't like it yesterday. Walter Matthau is not so protean as these reviews would have it. He can be very funny, but he needs a good script to do it. The women shone. The first story was brutally painful. The whole skit and all but 2 or 3 jokes belonged to Maureen Stapleton. The second sketch was simply nothing. Two things made me laugh (I was supposed to laugh, wasn't I?). When Matthau to freshen Barbara Harris' vodka stinger pours straight vodka right out of the bottle into her glass, and when she asks him (he's a movie producer) whether Frank Sinatra is as generous as people say he is, and he answers that at one of his dinners Sinatra served large portions. The third story had a lot of good guffaws in it, but it alas was a one joke show, and after the snappy ending, I was left feeling let down. Finally, I thought the curtain calls at the end of the flick were pretentious, the movie wasn't that good.