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*** Official "SHALLOW HAL" Review Thread (1 Viewer)

Robert Crawford

Senior HTF Member
Dec 9, 1998
Real Name
This thread is now the Official Review Thread for "Shallow HAL". Please post all HTF member reviews in this thread. Any other comments, links to other reviews, or discussion items will be deleted from this thread without warning! If you need to discuss those type of issues, I have designated an Official Discussion Thread which can be found at this link .
Again, without warning, I will delete all posts that are not a HTF member review!
Thank you for your consideration in this matter.
Peter Staddon: "I didn't say you can put 'Monkeybone' back!"
[Edited last by Robert Crawford on November 09, 2001 at 06:32 PM]


Stunt Coordinator
Jan 15, 2001
I saw Shallow Hal today and while I enjoyed it, I think a lot of people are going to be disappointed if they go in expecting to see a two hour version of the trailer. It has its moments, but there is a lot of downtime between them and it simply isn’t as well written as Something About Mary. In addition, the Farrellys pull few, if any, punches with respect to body image, handicaps, or misogyny, but most people will know that going in to the theater. There’s an adage about filmmaking that you “show, don’t tell” and yet, the Farrellys have every supporting character in the movie talking about how warm, generous, and kind Hal really is outside of dating, while there are very few scenes in which Hal seems even remotely warm, generous, or kind – it’s Jack “F--- Her Gently” Black for godsake!
I did enjoy Black’s performance, but I think he is much funnier when he writes his own material. It just seemed like the scripted dialogue was really holding him back, dumbing him down to its level. Paltrow is wonderful playing the shy fat girl and looks really good in her nightie (oh, the irony). Jason Alexander is, well, Jason Alexander.
Shallow Hal was actually very thought-provoking to me. Once you delve past the comedic aspects of the film, it really does force you to reexamine your own superficial prejudices as you see parts of yourself in Hal and even Mauricio – Spoiler:damn my vestigial third nipple! . There are little, unexplained touches, such as Spoiler: Rosemary seeing the skinny old nurse as a hot model when they are stopped at the gas station that really drive the point of the movie home. I also have to give credit to the Farrellys for continuing to push the boundaries of acceptable visuals with things like the Spoiler:tail, “walks on all fours” guy, and the girl from the burn unit.
One odd thing I noticed was the movie’s need to answer fanboy questions that could have been left out under the protective blanket of poetic license, such as: Spoiler: Mauricio’s conversation with Tony Robbins as to why Hal doesn’t feel the real Rosemary and Mauricio saying “I’ll pick it up at the airport” when Hal borrows his car at the end of the film.
Overall: 3 out of 4.
[Edited last by BrianKM on November 10, 2001 at 05:03 AM]

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