In the opening scene of “Fall Girls,” Paige (Amara La Negra) wakes up from an all-night bender in a swank hotel to find her “boss lady” (Joely Fisher) not breathing.
“This is NOT funny,” she says, freaking out.
And there’s your warning. This is NOT funny. There’s not a single laugh in 80 minutes of this “Weekend at Bernie’s” knock-off, a film without the caliber of cast, the writing, the tasteless daring or wit of that earlier comedy.
As in “Bernie’s,” there are people in a strange location — a swank San Francisco hotel that “boss lady” Simone (Fisher) has invited “my team” to for a farewell weekend. As in “Bernie’s,” something bad happens to the host — and it wasn’t an accident.
As in “Bernie’s,” the survivors, played here by La Negra, Erica Peeples, Erica Hubbard and Paris Phillips, have to pretend the dead person’s still alive, at least long enough to ensure they aren’t the ones blamed for the murder.
Simone was about to sell her company. That had all her “girls” sad, but not worried. But Paige was freshly-promoted, tech tyro Tyra (Hubbard) couldn’t sure of her status, snooty VP Lexy (Peeples) couldn’t be sure of her future, either.
Keke (Phillips)? She’s just Paige’s dead-weight, grammar-mangling sister-in-law. At least she’s in the clear.
“What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!”
“But we’re in SAN FRANCISCO!”
They consider no alternatives to the option of dressing up Simone in one of the other women’s wigs (every woman in this has a wig) and passing her off as still alive, still in charge, still taking meetings as they root out the real killer.
There’s zero suspense to that search, which is so badly handled as to be an afterthought. There’s no creativity to the Simone’s body out “living her life” stunts. Bringing in a couple of the women’s suspicious husbands adds nothing.
The villains, to a one, are colorless, and that’s not a crack about race.
Maybe the only gag worth noting is Keke’s choice of hoodie — “My GOD vs my enemies” is the slogan on it.
MPAA Rating: Unrated, adult subject matter, alcohol abuse, implied violence.
Cast: Amara La Negra, Joely Fisher, Erica Peeples, Erica Hubbard, Paris Phillips and Tami Roman
Credits: Written and directed by Chris Stokes. A BET/Footage Films release.
Running time: 1:20
Zero stars out of four? Wow, that must be a really, really, REALLY bad movie if you’re rating it THAT low. Even “Unplanned” didn’t get that low of a rating, and your review of it implicated that it could be a “violent, self-righteous propaganda film that incites its fans to violence” with its extreme anti-abortion themes. Or was that film at least better-made overall?