`View From the Top' is not a pretty picture

March 21, 2003|By ORLANDO SENTINEL

View From the Top is soooooo not funny.

Set up as a mild send-up of small-town girls pursuing the "glamour" of careers as flight attendants, it never comes to life. It rarely even reaches the level of cute.

Gwyneth Paltrow never seems quite dumb enough to be the rube from Silver Springs, Nev., who dreams of the jet-set and that dream route, "Paris, International, First Class." Christina Applegate, cast because of what she did for Cameron Diaz in The Sweetest Thing, has the thankless role of sidekick, a fellow stewardess on the "full, upright and locked" career track.

And Mark Ruffalo is the love interest, the guy who might tie our girl down just when she's about to achieve her dream assignment.

All the funny bits are in the outtakes shown during the closing credits.

Which sort of gives away what went wrong here. From those credits and the presence of Mike Myers (as a flight attendant trainer), it's plain that View From the Top was intended as a goofball farce of the Shallow Hal school. The script, written by a kid in film school, doesn't deliver a single original joke. Droll observations about how the working class lives and entertains itself play as if they were written by an alien. Or by some rich film school kid who's never held a real job in his life.

It's not that Paltrow can't play cheesecake. But why on Earth should she want to? The woman has an Oscar, charm to burn and one would hope better opportunities than this.

Sun Score: * 1/2

View from the Top

Starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Christina Applegate

Directed by Bruno Baretto

Released by Miramax

Time 87 minutes

Rated PG-13 for language, sexual references

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