Movie: Head in the Clouds

Our Rating: 1.50

Try Head Up Its Own Ass. Oversexed and silly, this wannabe-provocative period piece views the onset of World War II through the eyes of a half-French, half-American trollop (Charlize Theron) and the British student (Stuart Townsend) who can't decide if he's more interested in humping her on a pool table or combating the rise of fascism in Europe. He shares both interests with the story's erotic third wheel, an artist's model played by Penélope Cruz (and given a limp for no good reason). The story is a total cliché, sifting themes of avoidance and intervention done better in Casablanca, Cabaret and God knows what else. Theron gets naked, wears a tie in the tub and determinedly undoes whatever critical good will she's thus far amassed. Not one of her line readings rings authentic, demonstrating that her agent should keep her 3,000 miles from any part that prohibits her from using contractions. It's the worst performance by an Oscar-winning actress since Catwoman.

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