Edited by Tony Rutherford from Multiple Reports

Viola said she was honored to have produced  with her partner in crime McG, who can pull off a GREEN suit better than anyone.
Viola said she was honored to have produced with her partner in crime McG, who can pull off a GREEN suit better than anyone.
This movie means a lot to me personally -- and should resonate with anyone who has ever struggled with self esteem (which is basically everyone). Photo: M. Viola/Instantgram
I Feel Pretty , a PG-13  comedy about body image and confidence stars Amy Schumer as Renee Bennett  an average woman who's insecure about her looks. After knocking herself out in spin class at the fitness center, she wakes up believing she's been transformed into a glamorous bombshell.

FIRST LOOK ... I FEEL PRETTY:  One Female Reviewer Wants to Celebrate in the Nude; Schumer stars in Respectful Comedy about Inner Beauty

Her whiplash/multiple personality styled knock on the head comes after an instructor has preached, “Change your mind, change your life,” through attitude adjustment. (How many readers can remember the essence of self-love and boost self esteem counseling sessions underscoring alteration of your perception and thinking as a "choice" which will bring a transformation such as Schumer's character projects?)

Renee's  new confidence empowers her to live fearlessly -- and people take notice, including her friends (Aidy Bryant, Busy Philipps), her boss (Michelle Williams), and a new man (Tom Hopper) -- even though her outer appearance hasn't changed at all. However, her obsession with beauty has a constant reminder --- she works   for a cosmetics company which endeavors to keep female's feeling insecure about their looks,  so they will purchase more products. 

 

Directors Marc Silverstein and Abby Kohn have "Not that into You," "Never Been Kissed," and "How to Be Single" among their comedies about 21st Century relationships.  Two of the film' s six producers are familiar to Marshall fans --- McG and Mary Viola. McG directed "We Are Marshall" and Viola co-produced. They teamed for "The Duff," which featured Mae Whitman as a "designated ugly friend" in a John Hughes inspired look at high school pecking order.

FIRST LOOK ... I FEEL PRETTY:  One Female Reviewer Wants to Celebrate in the Nude; Schumer stars in Respectful Comedy about Inner Beauty

After viewing "I Feel Pretty," I'd add John Hughes without the sentiment and Ms. Schumer does comedy without any raunchiness. She shines in the part. Though imagining it otherwise, the pre and post head bang character goes from a timid, permission to speak, excuse me I'm Renee vocalization to a grab the mike stand up comedy pro. 

Her appearance delusion occasionally (my viewpoint) could induce a camera aided perspective, such as stripes or a wardrobe upgrade working as a receptionist . However, her basement workday pink and yellow heel attire accented against her introverted low self esteem wish I was beautiful perona.  My opinion started a strong debate --- that any fashion upgrade would have overwhelmed the filmmakers' impact in punctuating the no altered appearance premise. 

Empowerment stands solid. The acceptance of appearance (beautiful, short, tall,  thin, heavy, white, black, poor, rich) as a metaphor for all of life's enduring prejudices exposes dormant personality aspects. Keeping the focus on a bullseye, the wealthy and beautiful (by society's standard) have flaw crises of their own. It's like the screen repeating the how many believe it myth that hot girls don't get asked out as they intimidate males. 

Romantic comedies have absorbed a lengthy dry spell --- raunch and chic flicks have nearly been the only exceptions. Wisely, the dude connection(s) are a minor/major subplot; friendship overpowers love. 

 

Advance screenings have been favorable in a period that has seen the romantic comedy formula undergoing significant tweaks to bring viewers back to the theater.  Standard 'boy meets girl" endeavors have generally not been successful, but injecting a hybrid "chic flick" scenario and , perhaps, an edgy couple (or friends) have escaped neglect.

Filmmakers have fought an uphill battle since the initial release of the trailer --- critics scorned Schumer's character only "feeling good" about herself  after the head injury.  A bikini conntest especially. Considering the teams of producing and directing filmmakers, I attest  that the body image theme will be respectfully depicted ( two of them respectfully treated  the Marshall  air tragedy with solemn, yet inspirational results). 

FIRST LOOK ... I FEEL PRETTY:  One Female Reviewer Wants to Celebrate in the Nude; Schumer stars in Respectful Comedy about Inner Beauty

One of the first reviews praises "taking on the crisis in confidence" and a "bright spot" for romance, as it faces  capitalist vicious cycle realities that shove insecurity back into your head.    Unlike role shifting films such as "Freaky Friday" where audiences SEE the altered vision on screen, the directors never show an image of Schuler after she declares herself beautiful. 

A female critic called "I Feel Pretty" a glorious new film emitting roller coaster reactions from tears to glee. That writer wrote she felt so empowered after watching that she considered testing the laws that prohibit public nudity. 

Impressively, Emily Ratajkowski , the "Gone Girl" model actress, elicits the best performance from Schumer who is  paired with a traditionally "beautiful" woman to coincide with  her average  image. Thankfully , Schumer's "body" is not the blunt of ridicule; no, it's the societal norm that treat women of different sizes/shapes  differently that brew the best jokes. 

The directors ensure a new spin by avoiding labeling any of the characters ot  introducing  a cartoonish villain. For instance, despite Ratajkowski's "hot" appearance or Michelle Williams, as the company's Barbie prototype executive, the script does not have have them  shaming Schumer or Schumer displacing one of them.  She's her own worst enemy in scenes that etch beauty does not cure all flaws segments. 

FIRST LOOK ... I FEEL PRETTY:  One Female Reviewer Wants to Celebrate in the Nude; Schumer stars in Respectful Comedy about Inner Beauty

"I Feel Pretty" didn't cure my stranger introversion or self esteem lapses. I did see two women at the grocery . The thought twice crossed my brain: How could I bump in to the one in pink (LOL) and at least converse?  (They were too young for me?) Guess the flick's spell didn't work. I chickened out.

 

 

 

TRAFFIK 

In the action packed thriller, Traffik, Brea (Paula Patton) and John (Omar Epps) are off for a romantic weekend in the mountains. Isolated at a remote estate, the couple is surprised by the arrival of two friends, Darren (Laz Alonso) and Malia (Roselyn Sanchez). Just when the weekend starts to get back on track, a violent biker gang turns up and begins to torment them. The foursome are forced to fight for their lives against the gang who will stop at nothing to protect their secrets.

SUPER TROOPERS 2 

FIRST LOOK ... I FEEL PRETTY:  One Female Reviewer Wants to Celebrate in the Nude; Schumer stars in Respectful Comedy about Inner Beauty

Everyone's favorite law enforcement team is back by popular demand with the long anticipated follow up to the cult comedy classic SUPER TROOPERS. When an international border dispute arises between the U.S. and Canada, the Super Troopers- Mac, Thorny, Foster, Rabbit and Farva, are called in to set up a new Highway Patrol station in the disputed area. Unconventional police work follows, and the result is SUPER TROOPERS 2.