Sandra Bullock is one of the most naturally funny comedy actresses in the business, so it comes as no surprise that I went to see this in theaters. Despite unkind remarks by the critics, The Proposal is a delight.
The Proposal (2009) Film Review
People detest her. People avoid her. People IM about her. She is Margaret Tate (Bullock), a successful book editor who runs a strict department.
For three years, Margaret’s dedicated young assistant Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds) puts up with Margaret. He does so for one simple reason: he wants to be a book editor. A perfect day quickly turns into disaster for Margaret when she learns that her visa is denied, needless to say Margaret is livid. (After all, she’s Canadian not a terrorist!) Desperate to keep her career, inspiration hits and she blindsides Andrew with an engagement: theirs. No one is more surprised than the groom.
Peppered with immigration questions, Andrew and Margaret con their way through the interview and before they know it, a trip to visit Andrew’s parents happens. Only this time it’s Margaret who is in for a surprise when she learns his family is in – surprise! – Alaska.
Each time I see this, I love it more. Is it full of typical clichés? Yes, but then what film doesn’t have some sort of annoying tired joke or repetitive plot twist? You would be hard-pressed to find many that are entirely unique. What The Proposal does have is a fantastic leading couple whose wonderful and fun chemistry makes their interaction a happy thing to see on-screen. Who’d have thought veteran Bullock and the then-newcomer Reynolds would make a charming on-screen couple? Their quiet, tender moments (which are all too rare) result in lovely pieces of story. Really though, the whole cast deserves a shout-out; they are all wonderful (although none is more funny than Betty White).
The Proposal is, pure and simple, a movie about laughs. No matter the prominent genre, it’s still important the characters ultimately learn a lesson. Without this, you feel like nothing is worthwhile. This story is no different; Margaret learns a valuable life lesson as well as the meaning of family, and is better because of it.
In the director’s chair is romantic-comedy veteran Anne Fletcher (Step Up, 27 Dresses) – I’ve so enjoyed her other projects. With a background as a choreographer, each of her films seem to have some type of dancing and this film includes a hilarious woodland scenes that shows a wild side to Margaret. Even though this isn’t filmed in Alaska, scenery shots are beautiful as is the key shots between Margaret and Andrew, but much to my surprise some scenes and backdrops look unrealistic.
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For once I will complain about the credits epilogue. For some reason, this time around it actually seems to “ruin” the previous scene. Maybe I just didn’t want to know filmmakers decision on what happened next, maybe I wanted to be left to imagine an ending, but whatever (it just doesn’t “feel” right). Fans of Bullock’s classic While You Were Sleeping, many similarities is visible between the two, only this production is much “updated.” Several things are comparable; right down to Bullock’s tearfully touching speech. Even so, it’s unique on its own. To this day, I likely still haven’t laughed so hard seeing something at the theaters. (Most the time, we are just too conscious of other audience members.) This one certainly tickles the funny bone. So, is this proposal worth saying ‘yes’ too? If you ask me, yes!
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Content: two scenes are questionable. One involves a male stripper which gets a bit risqué; it’s more “comical” than “sexy.” Another scene has Margaret and Andrew naked [full frontal views of Margaret with everything inappropriate covered, and then full side views of both]. Other problems include some crude remarks [sexual references] and uses of sh*t, a** and an exclamation of “Jesus!” The film is PG-13.