Run time: 84 mins
In Theaters: Friday 22nd August 2003
Box Office USA: $1.5M
Box Office Worldwide: $1.7M
Distributed by: Paramount Pictures
Production compaines: Paramount Pictures
Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 9%
Fresh: 5 Rotten: 53
IMDB: 2.7 / 10
Director: Richard Benjamin
Screenwriter: Paul Rudnick
Spawned by the evil pen of Paul Rudnick, Marci X is about Marci (Lisa Kudrow), the rich daughter of a billionaire media tycoon who has to rescue the family empire from a boycott against rapper Dr. S (Damon Wayans, frighteningly unfunny), who's on a Death Row-esque record label owned by Marci's daddy. It all starts with Marci's dad getting a heart attack after receiving word of the boycott - led by Christine Baranski in yet another of her humorless harridan roles - and having to convalesce for a couple weeks. Marci then goes, with her three debutante friends, of course, to a Dr. S concert in order to plead with him to apologize for his profane lyrics, end the controversy, and end daddy's stress.
Up to this point, there is no real sign of the film's true colors. Kudrow plays her stock character and usual airhead self - not everyone's thing, for sure, but it always gets an easy chuckle out of me - and seems to be a dim light in what looks to be a pretty dull but by-the-numbers end of summer comedy: Easily watched and just as easily forgotten. But things take a turn for the horrible at the concert, wherein two things happen...
One: Damon Wayans appears, and it's just... wrong. Dr. S is supposed to be a vile gangster rapper, some ungodly combination of 2 Live Crew and Tupac. Yet he's up on the stage with choreographed dancers straight out of the last MC Hammer tour, a frizzy do, a high-pitched girly voice that's like a bad Mike Tyson impersonation, and clothes from Snoop Dogg's trashcan. Worse, he keeps coming back, scene after endless scene, doing a character who wouldn't have lasted 30 seconds on a bad episode of In Living Color, and he just won't go away.
Two: Dr. S challenges Marci to show on stage how "real" she is, which instigates just about the worst song ever put to film. Imagine Lisa Kudrow rapping (yes, rapping) about "the power in my purse" to a hip-hop audience, which is gradually, of course, won over by her infectious sense of rhyme. It doesn't end there, because the filmmakers apparently then thought they were making some sort of musical and manage to find an excuse every 20 minutes or so to toss in another song-and-dance number, which range from simply bad to surreal, what-were-they-thinking garbage.
Screenwriter Rudnick managed to wrangle a few chuckles out of Addams Family Values before sliding quickly down through the mediocrity that was In & Out and the atrocity Isn't She Great. Even given that less-than-stellar track record, it's almost impressive to watch how thoroughly he screws this one up, because it ought to be a no-brainer to wring a few decent jokes out of having a prissy rich girl like Marci get thrown together with a thuggish rapper. Not only that, but Rudnick also manages to offend just about every group represented on the screen by writing like someone who has learned everything they know about the world from a lifetime diet of US Weekly magazine and Access Hollywood.
Avert your eyes from this movie's posters, shut your ears to its radio ads, and remember, please, to stay far, far, far away.
In case you didn't heed our advice, you still have a chance to avoid the DVD. If you fail to do that, you aren't missing any extras on the disc -- it doesn't have any, unless you include the eject feature among them.
Well at least one person is having fun.