MCN Blogs
Kim Voynar

By Kim Voynar

LAFF 2009 Review: Weather Girl

If Weather Girl had been made by a big studio, someone would have had the bright idea to cast Kate Hudson in the lead role of the Sylvia, the “sassy” weather girl on a Seattle morning show who loses it on live television after learning her boyfriend Dale (Mark Harmon), the “talking haircut” who’s the host of the show, has been cheating on her with his co-host.
As it is, Weather Girl doesn’t aspire to be much more than a slight romantic comedy, but Tricia O’Kelley (who also produced) brings a sharp, biting edge to the somewhat predictable plot that keeps it from feeling too sappy. Sylvia moves in with younger brother Walt (Ryan Devlin) and soon finds herself attracted to Walt’s best friend, Byron (Patrick J. Adams), who lives across the hall but seems to be perpetually in Walt’s apartment. Byron’s younger than Sylvia, though, so even though there are sparks flying between them, she deems him unsuitable for anything beyond a sexual dalliance. This is fine with Byron at first, but … well, you can guess what happens once these kids start connecting.
Weather Girl is looking to explore larger issues around women past their early 30s begin to be perceived as running out of time, both in careers and relationships. Faced at the age of 35 with having completely start her life over at a time when YouTube has made her outburst about Dale’s affair fodder for public amusement and mockery (and, in the process, made a mockery of any serious job prospects for her), Sylvia’s at first at a complete loss for how to move forward. A date with a dorky accountant (Jon Cryer) pretty much lays out Sylvia’s situation: she’s past the age of being able to afford to be too picky, and her life has now been reduced to the possibility of considering a business-like relationship with guys like this. Or is it?
The script mostly skims the surface of these ideas, though, never quite delving deep enough to seriously explore these real issues in a comedic or ironic way, instead opting for the safer (though far less interesting) realm of the rom-com, where all life’s problems are resolved in 90 minutes or less. It’s fine for what it is, but there’s nothing terrifically compelling going on here; it’s not quite edgy enough to break any barriers as an indie-type film, not quite shiny enough to be a true Hollywood-style rom-com, which leaves me not quite sure how to classify it.
I’d have liked, honestly, to see the edge a mind like Tina Fey’s or Sarah Silverman’s might have put to this concept, but as a slight, moderately amusing rom-com, Weather Girl’s fair-to-partly cloudy.

Be Sociable, Share!

Comments are closed.

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon