Miss Congeniality (2000)
USA / English
"Unpolished. Unkempt. Unleashed. Undercover. "An FBI agent must go undercover in the Miss United States beauty pageant to prevent a group from bombing the event.
A good solid comedy for Sandra Bullock
It seems we have been getting our share of Beauty Pageant comedies lately
(`Beautiful', `Drop Dead Gorgeous'). `Miss Congeniality' is by far the
biggest production and the best of the lot. Sandra Bullock (who also
co-produced) plays Gracie Hart, a homely FBI agent who goes undercover at
the Miss United States beauty pageant to catch a terrorist who has
threatened to blow up the pageant.
The story is funny and Bullock shows her range, proving to be an excellent
comedian in addition to her proven talents as a dramatic actor. The writers
poke the typical fun at pageants and contestants throughout the film, but
they develop a conscience at the end when Gracie gets teary-eyed admitting
what a great experience it was. There is plenty of silly slapstick humor.
Bullock does her runway thing with aplomb, and her tongue firmly in cheek.
Michael Caine is wonderfully droll as the beauty consultant who is given the
impossible task of turning the ugly duckling into a swan.
Interestingly, this is not the first film where Sandra Bullock makes the
beast to beauty transition. In one of her early films in 1991 (`Love Potion
Number 9'), she plays a geek who discovers a love potion and turns into a
knockout. That film was an early indication of her comedic talents, but she
eschewed zany comedy for dramatic and romantic roles for many years after
that. It is good to see her return to it.
This is a very light and entertaining film that is easy to watch and easy to
forget. At over $100 million gross it had plenty of mass appeal. The
comedy is silly but fun, and Candice Bergen, Michael Caine and William
Shatner provide some terrific moments in supporting roles. I rated it a
7/10. It is a good, solid comedy.
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