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PopEntertainment.com > Reviews > Movie Reviews > Hit by Lightning

MOVIE REVIEWS

HIT BY LIGHTNING (2014)

Starring Jon Cryer, Will Sasso, Stephanie Szostak, Jed Rees, Braulio Eliser, Chantal Chamandy, Sean Tucker, Alexis Maitland, Richard Sutton, Harley Chamandy and Ricky Blitt.

Screenplay by Ricky Blitt.

Directed by Ricky Blitt.

Distributed by Chantal Chamandy Entertainment.  89 minutes.  Not Rated.

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Hit by Lightning

The romantic comedy has pretty much trotted out every potential variation on the meeting of soul mates.  Therefore Hit By Lightning does deserve some credit: it has changed things up a bit.

Hit By Lightning is a light farce about Ricky (Jon Cryer), a middle-aged lovelorn schlub who meets the perfect woman (Stephanie Szostak) through a dating service.  Danita is smart, beautiful, funny, sexy, loves all the same things as he does.  She is his perfect woman.  Oh yeah, there is one slight downside.  She’s married and wants him to murder her husband so that they can be together forever.

The movie flirts with the dark side of the situation – having the hero racked with doubts that she may be a femme fatale like Kathleen Turner who is just using him to get her wicked ways – and yet in the long run, the main character and the movie don’t seem to think that asking someone to commit a violent felony and a mortal sin should be a deal breaker in modern romance.

Through most of the film you just have her word on in that her husband is a slime ball, in fact really through the whole film.  On the surface, he appears to be a terrific guy – a former rabbi, a best-selling author, friendly, generous and helpful.  The only reason you may believe it is that he is played by Jed Rees (The Chris Isaak Show), who has made a career of playing jovial sleaze balls.

So, yeah, Hit By Lightning seems to be coming out in favor of killing someone as a courting technique.  But hey, she’s hot, she’s way out of his league, she’s good in bed and she loves Albert Brooks films.  Life in prison seems like a small price to pay.

Not that anyone in Hit By Lightning ever really thinks of the moral or legal implications of the act.  Even Ricky’s cynical party animal best buddy Seth (Will Sasso) barely even blinks when the idea of becoming an accessory to the crime is brought up.  Sure, why not, anything for a buddy....

I know, it’s a parody.  They aren’t really suggesting that murder is just a bump in the road on the way to true love, like different favorite sports teams or religious or political differences?  Are they?

Of course not, but writer/director Ricky Blitt – who previously worked on Family Guy – can’t quite seem to juggle the different levels of humor.  It all comes off feeling pretty much like a sitcom, the darker edges of the humor feel sanded down and have little bite.

Looking at it as a sitcom, he does have a good cast, though.  Cryer (who is ending an 11-year run on Two and a Half Men) and Sasso (best known for playing Curly in the recent Three Stooges reboot and MAD-TV) have a natural and charming (if light) rapport together.  As stated before, Rees is always good playing a personable asshole.  Szostak takes a character that is something of an enigma, and could be considered to be somewhat morally repugnant, and makes her rather charming, if never completely believable.  (That was the script’s problem, not the actress’.) 

Of course, believability is remarkably low throughout.  For example, this dating service eHappily.com seems to have an insanely good record.  Literally everyone in the movie who met someone through eHappily.com falls in love and starts planning the wedding within a matter of days.

Which means that maybe Ricky would be better off just waiting for the next post from an exceptionally attractive woman who will overlook all of his quirks and neuroses.

Jay S. Jacobs

Copyright ©2014 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: October 31, 2014. 

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Copyright ©2014 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: October 31, 2014. 

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