i could try and explain my rationale in why i chose to watch this, but then i realized that there is no plausible reasoning that would explain why i rented this movie [for free, i swear] off of comcast's on-demand service. in any case, i did it with the full expectation that this movie would be terrible.
and in many ways it was. first off, what on earth happened to renee zellweger? she was so cute in jerry maguire:
and since then she's either lived hard, or had tremendously bad plastic surgery. because in new in town she looks more like this:
there must have been a bad plastic surgeon involved with the second picture, right? because her mouth looks completely different. it's like they were striving for pouty and accidentally left her at pinched. and i don't bring this up because i like to make fun of bad plastic surgeries or the celebrities that have indulged in bad plastic surgeries, i bring it up because it's kind of shocking to see her face in the movie. and you don't really want your audience to have that reaction when you make a romantic comedy. because it wasn't a good kind of shocking, it was "what happened to her?" shocking.
anyway, the secondary characters all play up the minnesota stereotype. except for harry connick, jr who plays a down-in-the-dumps widower/union president as the male lead, he's actually not originally from minnesota so that they do have something in common. he's charming, but at the same time, this fish-out-of-water story focuses more on the city-girl-thrust-into-the-backwoods storyline rather than the romance between the two leads, which is somewhat in the tradition of "baby boom" but ends up being considerably less charming.
which is ultimately the major flaw of the film. all the elements of the traditional rom-com are there, and as a non-discerning viewer it's not anymore painful to sit through than say she's all that.
grade: ♥♥ out of ♥♥♥♥♥♥