Miss Meadows (2014)

If you've seen the quirky comedy/action movie Violet and Daisy, you know the kind of thing this was going for. Think of it as Pushing Daisies, but about a substitute teacher with a homicidal streak. Katie Holmes, fresh off her imprisonment in the Scientology headquarters of Tom Cruise, tries to take back the screen after a notable absence in the last two movies of The Dark Knight Trilogy.

Katie plays a prim-and-proper woman who appears to have been transplanted in modern day from the 1950's. She wears floral dresses of that era, long gloves, and carries a handbag wherever she goes. In that handbag, as you can see in the poster here, is a small caliber firearm that is one way Katie dispatches people who don't measure up to what she would expect from interpersonal interaction in the 1950's.

To complete her persona is a house that looks like it should be from that era and a 1956 Nash Metropolitan - which is awesome. In fact, it's probably the thing I like best about this movie. That's not to say that Jean Smart doesn't play Katie's mother very well. She is also trapped in the 1950's, but we get hints that she knows that it's pretend - while Katie does not. On the whole, Katie's character just doesn't work in modern day at all. Even with all the props, the wardrobe, the manners, and the people telling her how nice she is, this bubble can't keep floating, and it has to burst. The question is - how has it managed to not get burst already?

As cute as Katie is, and as much as she wants to give the character a personality, the fact is that she comes off as cold and disconnected from everyone around her, even the love interest played by James Badge Dale isn't really in her inner circle at any point. I can't figure out his infatuation with her aside from pure lust after Katie herself. She's not charming, she's not engaging, she's not deep, and she really isn't worth swooning over. In fact, she's not even worth making a movie about.

So, we have a movie that has a familiar premise with uninspired characters, relatively bland acting, good (if misused) props and wardrobe, and a story that goes... nowhere. It's hard to believe that this movie got funding. It's a hunk of stale bread that has been toasted and had some sugar-free blackberry jam scrubbed on it lightly. It tries, but it is fundamentally flawed, and it is ultimately just not worth the time or effort.

Story was very weak
Dialogue was bland
Acting was passable
Wardrobe was good
Directing was not great

Bottom Line: She should have gone back for the other two movies in the Dark Knight trilogy.



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