Making Arrangements Movie Review
As it turns out, the mockumentary's premise is that -- in the public eye -- floral shops are sedated and quiet places to work and that the people therein are totally sane and normal.
Melissa Scaramucci's video movie tells us otherwise: That floral designers are crazy lunatics who scream at each other and steal flowers from one another's designs. (I always presume everyone is insane, hence my missing of the gag here.)
That's the story of Making Arrangements, which follows six designers in one flower shop (possibly the biggest flower shop that has ever existed) over a few days. It's crisis from day one: Two weddings, a funeral, a convention, and various other jobs arrive all at once. It will take all six designers working day and night to get the work done.
Truth be told, the jobs would go a lot easier if there wasn't so much catfighting in the group. The story careens along, with countless disasters that typically involve a destroyed arrangement or a missing order.
Much of Making Arrangements consists of, well, making arrangements. Flowers are put into vases. They are then delivered by a slacker delivery driver. Nothing at all happens in these scenes -- even if the film was a real documentary, they'd have been cut out.
The lulls are not the biggest flaw with Arrangements though; the characters just aren't insane enough to make a mockumentary work. Consider Christopher Guest's loonies from Best in Show -- even the most outwardly normal characters are shown in their full, psychotic glory. Even Arrangements' most engaging actors -- Rebecca McCauley and Stacy Farley -- are given tame stereotypes to fit into. McCauley is the chubby and goofy girl who everyone beats up on. Farley is the blond debutante who specializes in weddings (but tends to vanish for hours at a time, presumably to get drunk). The rest of the characters are old archetypes: Compare Arrangements' way-gay designer with Guest in Waiting for Guffman and you'll see just what I mean.
Making Arrangements has some precious moments of charm and a few great laughs, so it's not all a wash. The mockumentary choice is its unfortunate Achilles Heel -- a straight-up comedy would have served the material and the setting with much more success.
Opium comes from flowers, right?