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Serving Sara

movie reviewvideo review out of 4 Movie Review: Serving Sara

Starring: Elizabeth Hurley, Matthew Perry
Director: Reginald Hudlin
Rated: PG-13
RunTime: 100 Minutes
Release Date: August 2002
Genres: Comedy, Romance

*Also starring: Vincent Pastore, Bruce Campbell

Review by Steve Rhodes
2 stars out of 4

Matthew Perry in SERVING SARA, a film about as fresh as a week-old muffin, plays a competitive process server. As directed by Reginald Hudlin (THE LADIES MAN), the movie has two good jokes, both of which are prominently featured in the trailers. One has Elizabeth Hurley flashing her breasts -- no, we don't see them, only a minor character gets the pleasure -- and the other involves faking the existence of a deadly virus in a crowded stadium.

Although Perry and Hurley get joint billing, the movie is really Perry's, which is a shame. Hurley has a gift for a wicked brand of romantic comedy that Hudlin never figures out how to use properly. A remarkably bland actor, Perry is best cast in a supporting role. He just isn't strong enough to carry a picture, as he is required to in SERVING SARA. The chemistry between them never becomes credible, no manner how many scenes they have together. Both come across as so in love with themselves that they wouldn't have time for anyone else.

The plot is structured as a road movie in which Joe Tyler (Perry), a process server, is attempting to serve divorce papers on Sara Moore (Hurley). Tony (Vincent Pastore), another process server, is trying to serve the papers first. A twist has Sara hiring Joe to serve her husband, Gordon (Bruce Campbell), instead since there's a legal advantage based on who sues whom first and for which state. Gordon hails from the great state of Texas, which is the butt of a never ending series of jokes in the picture, while Sara is an Englishwoman who lives in New York. Texas, we learn from a billboard, is the home of Sparky the electric chair, which has "371 satisfied customers."

The film's low point, a real FREDDIE GOT FINGERED moment, has Joe helping a bull perform sexually. Don't ask.

"Well, well, there is a God," Sara remarks at one point, which only serves to remind the audience of a much better picture, BEDAZZLED, in which Hurley had a decent script to work from. Here, even in a miniskirt and a tank top with "Trailer Trash" emblazoned across her chest, she never comes close to reaching her comedic potential.

SERVING SARA runs 1:40. It is rated PG-13 for "crude humor, sexual content and language" and would be acceptable for kids around 12 and up.

My son Jeffrey, age 13, gave it ***, commenting especially on how much he liked Hurley's acting.

Copyright 2002 Steve Rhodes

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