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World’s Worst Chick Flick Part 7: Beauty and the Briefcase

February 1, 2011

Beauty and the BriefcaseIf any of your friends or your spouse or significant other ever suggests watching Beauty and the Briefcase, just say no. Bargain with them if you have to. Make promises you don’t intend to keep. Just don’t watch this movie unless your taste in cinema includes cliches, unlikable characters, and improbable situations. Before I delve into the full extent of why you should avoid this movie, let’s go over the plot.

Hillary Duff plays Lane, an aspiring magazine writer. Because she works with fashion magazines, she only ever meets gay men and apparently every other man in New York City is either taken or not good enough. She spends the first ten minutes of the movie bemoaning her singleness because she obviously deserves to have a great boyfriend because she’s blond and beautiful and she wants one.

Her fashion photographer friend gets her a meeting with Cosmopolitan’s editor and Lane pitches a story idea in which she gets a job in finance (where straight men abound and they all wear suits) and falls in love. She’ll tell the story of how she found love in the world of suits and finance.

What could possibly go wrong?

Miracles of miracles, she gets a job the very next day doing things for which she is completely and utterly unqualified. She lies through her teeth during the interview and pours water on the computer to get out of taking a software test.

Lane goes on a bunch of dates, meets a guy that doesn’t work in finance, but is perfect, ends up enjoying and excelling at the job and yadda, yadda, yadda. She doesn’t fall in love with any of the men in suits and it turns out her perfect guy is a liar. But then her boss, Tom, finds out that she’s been writing this story and she quits. Lane writes the story, it’s awesome, and she realizes she’s actually in love with her boss, even though he doesn’t have any of the qualities she normally looks for in a man. They kiss and make up, live happily ever after, and the world continues spinning on its axis.

Let’s do this in bullet points:

– Lane is completely unlikable. She whines about being single and then has an impossible list of qualifications. Such as having an exotic accent. That’s a bonus, honey, not a requirement.

– Some of the ridiculous circumstances include finding the perfect job within 24 hours, her office being absolutely full to the brim with eligible bachelors, and the editor of Cosmo being understanding and helpful during the whole fiasco.

– During one scene, Lane and two of her friends are playing Go Fish with photos of men’s abs. Gentlemen, I would like to say here and now that that is not an accurate portrayal of what women do. Do not let made-for-TV movies brainwash you into thinking we are that inane.

– There is a fine line between trying to be quirky and just being weird. This movie did not walk that line well. A lot of its humor seemed to be trying for quirky and different, but it fell flat and just seemed to be trying too hard.

Bottom line: Don’t do it. I know it’s on Netflix instant queue and it’s only 86 minutes long, but there is a reason it’s only 86 minutes. If it had been any longer, the viewer’s head might explode from the lack of originality and they would have run out of skin-tight outfits for Hillary Duff to wear.

*Shout-out to my friend Sarah Miller for suggesting this movie. It’s definitely a real contender for the title.

Beauty and the Briefcase

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