MALIBU'S MOST WANTED, directed by SEE SPOT RUN's John Whitesell, is an uneven
parody of Eminem in 8 MILE. Making its 80-minute running length feel long, the
movie's sometimes cute schtick quickly wears thin. Mixing in parts of
ZOOLANDER, BULWORTH and RUTHLESS PEOPLE, the movie does provide a fair number of
Brad Gluckman (Jamie Kennedy), who likes to be called only by his rap name of
B-Rad, is a white boy who thinks he's a black rapper. B-Rad suffers from the
indignities of having grown up rich. With a beach home that would put the White
House to shame, B-Rad calls his over-privileged Malibu environment, the 'Bu.
His father, Bill (Ryan O'Neal), is running for governor of California.
Since B-Rad's outlandish behavior is causing Bill to drop like a stone in the
polls, something must be done. In order to scare B-Rad white, Tom Gibbons
(Blair Underwood), Bill's campaign manager and chief spinmeister, hires a couple
of actors, Sean (Taye Diggs) and PJ (Anthony Anderson), to kidnap B-Rad and take
him to the 'hood. Diggs and Anderson steal every scene that they are in and are
easily the best part of the picture.
With B-Rad not sure what is real and what isn't, he is alternately scared and
full of bravado while in the ghetto. The movie's biggest disappointment comes
in a rap showdown that tries to poke fun at a similar scene in 8 MILE. The one
in MALIBU'S MOST WANTED is just too short and too underwritten. Rather than
being the story's highlight, it becomes a scene that should have been left on
the cutting room floor.
"You say one more line, and I'm going to smoke myself," one gun-toting bad guy
tells B-Rad when he won't shut up with his obnoxious rhymes. You'll probably
think the same thing many times during the movie. But, even if much doesn't
work in MALIBU'S MOST WANTED, what does is fun.
MALIBU'S MOST WANTED runs 1:20. It is rated PG-13 for "sexual humor, language
and violence" and would be acceptable for teenagers.
My son Jeffrey, age 14, thought the movie started off slowly but eventually
Copyright © 2003 Steve Rhodes