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Miss Congeniality 2:
Armed And Fabulous

cast: Sandra Bullock, Regina King, William Shatner, Ernie Hudson, and Treat Williams

director: John Pasquin

111 minutes (12) 2005 Warner VHS rental

RATING: 1/10
reviewed by Emily Webb
Miss Congeniality 2 is the precise reason that sequels have a bad name. Sandra Bullock stars as FBI Agent Gracie Hart, who in the original film, Miss Congeniality, was turned from slovenly to sensational when she had to go undercover as a beauty pageant contestant. Now, she is so famous that it's virtually impossible for her to do her job. When her best friend, the reigning Miss America and her chaperone (played by William Shatner) are kidnapped for ransom, Gracie insists of going to Las Vegas to be part of the investigation. Critic James Berardinelli in his review for 'ReelViews' says, "This is one hideous excuse for a motion picture - the kind of steaming sewage that occasionally makes life as a film critic seem like an exercise in self-immolation."

I couldn't sum it up better. Miss Congeniality 2: Armed And Fabulous is the biggest pile of rubbish... no, excrement, that I have seen in a long while. It is particularly disappointing to see Sandra Bullock degrade herself in such a way that detracts attention from what is left of her girlish appeal and her comedic gifts (her comic timing and delivery is brilliant).

In the original film, Michael Caine and Candice Bergen were there to add some gravitas to the project and Bullock is best when she is working with actors who can support her comic talents. Miss Congeniality was fun, harmless and a success. Gracie is far less appealing in her new persona as a fashion diva: in the original, the comedy and appeal came from the fact that she was so useless at fashion and being feminine.

I gave this film 1/10 because I actually like Sandra Bullock and it is disappointing to see a great actress' career going down the drain. She's not getting any younger in Hollywood terms and now is the time for Sandy to diversify, or at least pick more quality vehicles. (What was she thinking when she signed for this sequel?) It is a sad fact that she has done more crap than quality (Speed 2, Two If By Sea, Murder By Numbers). One of my favourite films is Hope Floats and although cheesy, it showed that she could do comedy and straight acting. She will always be a pretender to Julia Roberts and it is a shame. Julia Roberts had a down period as well, like Bullock has had recently, but at least Roberts had the smarts to recognise that she had to return to the formula that worked best for her talents, hence the career revival with My Best Friend's Wedding, then followed by Notting Hill.

Do not even bother seeing this.

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