Sunday, September 28, 2008

CAREER REHAB: Jessica Biel's comedic period piece

Usually the words "comedy" and "period piece" don't mesh well, but after seeing Frances McDormand's Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, I was convinced it wasn't that bad of a genre. I was even more convinced after I saw the trailer for Easy Virtue in which Jessica Biel plays a promiscuous American divorcée who crash lands into a British family after spontaneously getting engaged to their son, played by Ben Barnes (The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian).

Biel hasn't exactly had an easy go of it--convincing Hollywood and even moviegoers that she has what it takes to last in this business--but I can assure you this is a side of Biel you've never seen...and I think it's safe to say, you've seen a lot of her, whether it's nearly nude on the cover of a magazine or in bra and panties in an Adam Sandler comedy. Biel, however, seems to be doing everything in her power to put herself on the map ever since she freed herself from the shackles of "7th Heaven."

She played badasses in Blade: Trinity and Stealth, the one-true-love of Edward Norton's character in The Illusionist, the damsel-in-distress in the action flick Next, a heartbroken woman in the war indie The Home of the Brave, and a quirky hot lawyer in the aforementioned I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, and she still has plenty to come. But, once again, none of those compare to this role. It's an adaptation of a 1920s play originally adapted into a silent film by Alfred Hitchcock. The comedy has clever quips and comic timing you wouldn't believe. And while I could rant on-and-on about how amazingly handsome her co-star Barnes is, I must say she effortlessly steals the spotlight in the trailer.

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