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Say It Isn't So

Starring Heather Graham and Chris Klein
Written by Peter Gaulke & Gerry Swallow
Directed by J. B. Rogers

IN SHORT: We'll say it until the cows come home (which they do in this flick). This is not a Farrelly Bros. movie. [Rated R for Strong Sexual Content, Crude Humor and Language. ]

From our read the fine print department: The names Bobby Farrelly and Peter Farrelly are prominently displayed in the advertising for Say It Isn't So. Sometimes by name. Sometimes as "From the Guys who did There's Something About Mary." The key phrase is "guys", which the Farrelly Brothers are. They did not direct this movie nor write this movie, as Peter did with the extremely funny Outside Providence. They did provide the clout to get the flick made and their influence is present in the jokes -- and there are a couple of whoppers -- but much of the humor is of the "let's hurt people" kind. Some jokes are funny. Some are shocking. Some are neither.

And there aren't nearly enough of 'em in this film to make it worth your while. We'd love to make a play on words involving the title at this point, but we're just not feeling that clever. A pair of first time screenwriters (Peter Gaulke & Gerry Swallow) teamed with a Farrelly Bros. assistant director (J. B. Rogers) and try their best to make a Farrelly Bros.-type film. At its core (Boy Meets Girl. Boy Falls In and Makes Love To Girl. Boy Discovers Girl is his long lost sister...) it's perfect for that kind of humor. We admit we were looking forward to seeing how the Brothers would pull this off, back before we read the fine print. Unlike the kind of movie that we expected, we found Say It Isn't So stuffed with music video type passages and sorely lacking in the torrent of jokes that we expected. Whether we find the jokes funny or not isn't relevant to the argument. We don't think beating up on a paralyzed stroke victim is particularly funny (as anyone who has read the History of Cranky can figure out) but we know kidlets that and Adam Sandler fans love that stuff. We did like both of the jokes that cap off the flick and there are enough gags in the middle that we didn't nod out.

Gilbert "Gilly" Noble (Chris Klein) is the Boy. Raised in an orphanage in Shelbyville, Indiana, this fine public servant (Animal Control), Gilly believes that there are no "lonely places, only lonely people." He won't pull the lever on the stray pups and kitties that are about to meet their maker and he's got a second rate Private Eye, Vic Vetters (Brent Briscoe) tracking down his long lost mother. Jo Wingfield (Heather Graham) is the Girl who cuts hair in Shelbyville. She's been living in Beaver, Oregon but has just returned to her roots, with mom Valdine (Sally Field) and recovering stroke victim dad Walter (Richard Jenkins) in tow. There's a long line of victims, er, customers waiting for Jo's "unique" European style of hair cutting for the very simple reason that Shelbyville has no woman that comes anywhere close to the pinup perfection of Ms. Graham. Make no mistake about it, Say It Isn't So is a loving pinup to Heather G. whose blue eyes radiate and hypnotize. The scissors in her hands have other ideas, but that would be telling.

And so they fall in love. And so Gilly pops the question. And so they do the nasty. And so detective Vic Vetters shows up with conclusive proof that Gilly and Jo are brother and sister. Jo flees back to Beaver. Gilly moves in with "mom and dad" and is demoted to the roadkill crew. Months pass and the inevitable happens. Jo becomes engaged to the millionaire she left behind and her parents count the cash. A knock comes on the door and it's a guy named Leon Pitofsky (Jack Plotnick), who bears conclusive proof that he is the true son of Valdine and Walter Wingfield!

And it's back to music video land as Gilly heads to Oregon to stop the wedding, while Valdine concocts a story about Gilly going crazy and becoming a sexual psychopath. From here on out, the script spirals off into the ether with the introduction of a Jimi Hendrix styled airplane pilot (Orlando Jones) who aids Gilly in his Quest; and Jack's scummy brother Jimmy (Mark Pellegrino) and Jimmy's pal Streak (Brent Hinkley) who've confused Oregon for stereotyped Appalachia.

There's an entire half hour at the back end of this movie that makes very little sense at all, except to set up ways to beat Gilly into a pulp and embarrass him on every possible level. The usual stuff. We note that Gilly complains: "all I want is ten minutes with Jo!" -- you can figure out the inevitable rejoinder all by yourself -- except for the fact that he had earlier had his ten minutes and made his peace and said good-bye. It's enough to make you want to punch out a bovine.

Once this section of the story is conveniently explained by a member of the cast, things stabilize but that's the end of the movie and we were far past the point of caring.

On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Eight Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to Say It Isn't So, he would have paid...


Yep, the usual tasteless and abusive jokes wrapped around a warm fuzzy ending. If you're going to make a copy, you might as well shoot for the moon. Which is hundreds of thousands of miles away from where this turkey lands.

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