You can't compare this movie to the television series because in a way it's nothing like it. I thought when I went to see the film that it was going to be just like the television series, Samantha and Darren are a happy couple but the problem is she's a witch, Darren knows it, her mother keeps getting involved in the relationship and mad chaos begins in each episode.
But the film is actually about Will Ferrel wanting to remake Bewitched and when he finds Nicole Kidman in a book shop he thinks this is the girl to play Samantha in the remake of Bewitched. What he doesn't know is that Samantha really is a witch and when she overhears how the horrid Will Ferrel is just using her to make his way back into the limelight, she decides to put her magical powers to good use and seeks revenge on Ferrel with very funny results.
The beggining is slow, I have to admit, and at times the storyline does drag a little but if you stick with it I think you'll be pleased and amused towards the end.
But if you are expecting a movie remake of the Bewitched television series, this, sadly, isn't.
on 10 January 2006
I am a sucker for the odd rom-com, and generally love Will Ferrell's sweet silliness and Nicole Kidman's versatile acting skills. This movie, however, was a complete waste of time. It's not funny, or clever, or even vaguely entertaining. Nicole Kidman appears to be trying to act like Marilyn Monroe, which she does very badly. Her character is supposed to be a gutsy airhead type, but she comes across more as being grossly childlike and unlikeable. Will Ferrell's character is inconsistent and therefore it is difficult to buy the character's transformation. Please do not waste your valuable time or money on this film. This is the first movie I have ever felt so strongly about that I felt I should warn people away from it. Take heed!
on 15 February 2006
With a cast that included Nicole Kidman, Michael Caine and Shirley MacLaine I expected good things from Bewitched. Boy was I wrong!! I seriously don’t think they could have done a worse job of making this film if they tried.
Will Ferrell plays Jack Wyatt, the washed-up actor who is trying to resurrect his film career by playing the lead as Darrin in the remake of the 1960’s sit-com Bewitched. All he needs is the perfect actress to play Samantha. Then he stumbles upon Isabel who has the nose-twitch that he wants and is just perfect for the part of Samantha. Endeared by Jack, Samantha signs up but it doesn’t take long until it becomes obvious who the real star of the show will be and although Isabel is a real witch she is on a quest to stop using her powers. But when Jack behaves like a ‘jerk’ she just can’t help herself.
Will Ferrell gives the most nauseating performance I’ve ever seen. His switch from bad-guy to good-guy is wooden to say the least. Nicole Kidman forgot everything she’s ever been taught about acting and gave the most mediocre performance of her career as Isabel. Only Michael Caine and Shirley MacLaine give performances worthy of mention. But all in all this film was just abysmal. There was no continuity of thought and nothing seemed to ‘mesh’. Awful is the best word to describe it.
It was my daughter's fault. She insisted I take her to see Bewitched, much against my better judgement. My memories of the original Bewitched TV series starring the incomparable Elizabeth Montgomery, Agnes Moorehead (who in her younger days appeared in Citizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons) and Dicks York and Sergeant were of an enchanting sitcom. Sadly, this film has sullied the memory for ever. Nicole Kidman faithfully imitates Montgomery's every gesture, but the rest of the cast descend down the plughole to oblivion, taking a woefully drab and humourless script with it.
If ever there was an argument against DVDs being sold at "full price", this is it. Save your money, and if you ever want to be reminded how bad Hollywood can be, watch this film when it's been justifiably remaindered.
on 10 August 2008
Have been watching the present re-runs of the tv series 'Bewitched', courtesy of Sky tv, and have found it quite amusing for it's time. I can see why it became a success in the sixties, however the recent film version was surprisingly bad considering the money and talent that has been thrown at it. Nicole Kidman seemed to lack any personality at all, in fact she seemed to sleepwalk her way through the proceedings, whereas Will Ferrell had enough charisma and gusto for Jerry Lewis, the Marx brothers, and the three stooges put together, but not in a good way, the way your uncle might act when drunk at your wedding.
It's rare for a big budget high-concept studio romantic comedy to be a complete disaster, but Nora Ephron's smugly post-modern 2005 update of Bewitched seems to go out of its way to turn the TV show's simple premise into... well, they can't really seem to make up their mind. The end result feels like the script went through dozens of completely different drafts and they kept three pages from each of them and stuck them together in a random order. Instead of being about a mortal who marries a witch who's trying to give up magic, it has Will Ferrell's fading and self-centred movie star inadvertently hiring Nicole Kidman's genuine witch who's trying to give up magic to be his submissive co-star in a TV remake of the show only to eventually fall for her for real. Which happens in the most convoluted, messy way possible as spells are cast, uncast, rewound and whatever as the film tries to make up its mind what to do next. Kidman overdoes the gauche naiveté while Ferrell is reduced to ever more tiresome variations of his hyperactive man child shtick and a badly off-form Shirley MacLaine totters through it clumsily as the actress playing Endora who might also really be a witch. Only Michael Caine as Samantha's perpetually horny warlock father and a last-minute deus ex machina cameo by Steve Carrell perfectly channelling Paul Lynde's Uncle Arthur come out of the increasingly tiresome and unfocused mess relatively unscathed. A few jokes are mildly amusing, but not nearly enough to hide the clueless storyline or the fact that this is one romcom where you'd rather the two leads never met in the first place.
Extras include deleted scenes, cast interviews, trivia track and a couple of featurettes.
This is the worst film I've had the misfortune to endure for a long time , how they persuaded Nicole Kidman Shirley Maclaine and Michael Caine to act in it I have no idea however I'm not surprised to see Will Ferrell in it as he's not exactly what you'd call a serious actor. To say the whole film was childish is giving children's entertainment a bad name. It's basically about making a modern version of the old popular TV program "Bewitched" and accidentally casting a real witch in the role of Samantha. I've never seen such a puerile stupid and idiotic attempt to make a comedy - don't watch unless you want to waste two hours on mindless trash.
on 19 March 2007
...and aren't you glad? Really? A remake of the original would be a travesty!
Kidman is luminous as always and very funny in moments as a witch who wasn't allowed to watch Bewitched when she was growing up.
Caine is fab. Farrell is bearable. There are some great supporting actors.
This ISN'T an especially clever movie, but it has some wonderful moments (the scene where, in her reading, Kidman's character abandons the script and comes out which such classics as needing a licence for a poisoned apple, is great fun, and Kidman discovering things like ring-pull cans etc is thoroughly charming).
The weak point IMO is that Farrel is essentially rather unlikable and irritating, and really not very funny at all. Some great supporting actors and the fabulous Kidman make it a bearable little romcom which will bring back good memories of Montgomery and co in the original (and best). It isn't the greatest movie out there, but for a night in with the girls and some harmless fun, I've seen a LOT worse! Some good giggles, some interesting extras... I wouldn't recommend paying more than a fiver for it, but it's a little bit of fluffy fun that's not nearly as bad as it's made out to be. PLUS - it will make you want to see the originals again :)
Even though I'm still struggling with the concept of Will Ferrell getting the opportunity to romance Nicole Kidman onscreen – and being paid buckets full of money, to boot – I do have to say that I enjoyed Bewitched more than I thought I would. I'm not saying there is anything at all substantial to the film, though, because there isn't. It's complete fluff – but it's funny fluff. Ferrell is his typically hilarious bumbling self, Shirley MacLaine seems to really enjoy the chance to ham it up as Endora, and Nicole Kidman is – well, she's Nicole Kidman. I was as surprised as anyone when she took the role of the new Samantha, but she's quite good and as becoming as ever – although this part certainly offered her no challenges whatsoever. Everyone in this film is good – except Steve Carell, who proves beyond the shadow of a doubt that we will never see the likes of Paul Lynde again (which is probably a good thing).
I'm no fan of remakes, especially when so many of them are rather abysmal and usually leave me feeling quite offended on behalf of a show I have loved since I was a child. You have to give the filmmakers of Bewitched a little credit, though, for taking a different approach to this particular remake. They don't just recreate the original characters and give them an embarrassing script to run with, they do a film about recreating the original characters. Nicole Kidman isn't Samantha at all, she's Isabel Bigelow, the woman who plays Samantha in the remake. Of course, Isabel is herself a witch trying to live a normal life. Will Ferrell isn't Darren; he's Jack Wyatt, the guy who plays Darren. When Isabel and Jack fall for each other, it's the whole Samantha syndrome all over again. The plot sounds rather weak, doesn't it? I told you this was pure fluff.
Ferrell gets most of the laughs as a formerly successful movie actor trying to bounce back from a movie bust of Ishtar proportions; he's your typical me-centric actor who cares only about himself. If his move to TV in the form of the Bewitched remake falls through, he knows he's all but done in the business. That's why he insists that a complete no-name star as Samantha, one who won't mind the fact that he's stealing all of the spotlights. He thinks he finds just the woman in Isabel, who is in turn attracted to Jack because he's such an emotional mess (which is exactly what she is looking for in her quest to live a normal life) – but of course he has no idea he's dealing with a real witch. The rest of the film is completely predictable, of course, and the Ferrell-Kidman matchup doesn't seem to have a whole heck of a lot of chemistry, but it's good, playful fun that doesn't try to be anything more than that. Shirley MacLaine and Michael Caine lend a fair amount of class to the act, but it's purely the comedy incorporated into the script that makes this movie go.
The plot, besides being predictable, also has a few problems – I for one would never have given Isabel a real-life Aunt Clara, and the whole Uncle Arthur scene is just embarrassing to have to watch. Ferrell's goofiness and Kidman's charm, though, prove strong enough to overcome the film's obvious faults. As long as you go in expecting nothing more than some good laughs, Bewitched should not prove disappointing.
on 17 January 2008
Oh it was always going to be 'touch and go' when playing about with the idea of bringing back the much loved and deeply cherished 'Bewitched' - I am sure there was plenty of goodwill by the viewers, wishing and hoping for a rendition that could recapture the real MAGIC of the tv series.
Nicole Kidman as Samantha was inspired casting - she plays the part very well and one can almost forgive the fact that she is NOT Elizabeth Montgomery because one can tell that she has put in a lot of work replicating characteristics, mannerisms and the downright 'niceness' of Samantha - the respect for the original is all there.
The apperances of Michael Caine (father), Shirley MacLaine (screen mother) and Steve Carell (uncle) are very amusing - one feels that they really should have had bigger parts to play as they lifted the whole feel of the movie when they were in the scene.
What lets this film down is the fact it is trying to be too clever for it's own good - a film about the making of a re-make of 'Bewitched' ?? The entire point of the 60's series was that it was simple. The new film tries to bulldoze us with the comic 'genius' of the day - Will Ferrell and wants us to see how unfair it is having to play Darrin, and thus play second fiddle to Samantha.
The audience always tolerated Darrin because he set up the best scenes for Samantha. Surely it said something when the original actor in the tv series was replaced and the audience wasn't bothered or even noticed !?! This film is almost a film about 'Darrin' (or the actor playing Darrin in the film !?), taking the focus away from Samantha for too long. We then have to believe that Samantha falls in love with this jerk, most detestable man on the planet.
It could have been so good - we all wanted it to be - but it was spoilt by Hollywood Producers who needed another vehicle to show us how 'wonderful' Will Ferrell is (maybe to Americans he is- who knows??)and a chance for Nicole Kidman to flex her Oscar Winning Acting muscles and be a 'Big Name' on the titles.
It had all the right ingredients to cast an enchanting spell over the viewers - but it ended up vexing them, and hexing itself.