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Bedazzled

Bedazzled

Director:Stanley Donen
Cast:Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Eleanor Bron
Genre:Film, Comedy

By Jack Purdy | Posted

Peter Cook and Dudley Moore, as a team, rank with the immortals of comedy. The question is, in 25 years or so, will anyone write that previous sentence substituting the names "Elizabeth Hurley" and "Brendan Fraser"? Not bloody likely--especially if their remake of the 1967 Cook/Moore vehicle Bedazzled is any indication. Like the original, this Harold Ramis-directed remake is a gloss on the legend of Faust. And Ramis, Larry Gelbart, and Peter Tolan, who adapted the script, kept Fraser's motivation the same as Moore's--he's a schlub, willing to sell his soul for the love of a female co-worker. But where Cook was a lanky, elegant, acerbic Satan, Elizabeth Hurley is . . . well, she's spectacular looking, but her role is one big joke, as in, "Just imagine if Satan was an incredibly sexy dame." The Princess of Darkness puts Fraser's Elliot Richards through a whole bunch of bad changes, but Fraser is such a big, studly hunk that his nerdiness seems laughable--and not in a good way. (When the tiny Moore sold his soul in the original, you knew he had nothing to lose.) The problem with the new Bedazzled isn't that the original was such a great film; it's that the remake is nothing more than an effects-laden trip filled with Elizabeth Hurley's legs and cleavage. And there's nothing funny about those.

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