So Tina Fey's new movie Baby Mama comes out today! It's a very important movie because it will once and for all decide if she is the funniest woman in America or absolutely no one. Yes indeed. And in doing so, Tina Fey will finally determine for all of us if, in fact, women are funny. You see this isn't just a comedy with a woman in it. It's a comedy starring a woman! A woman with her own TV show! And her costar is a woman too! Not since Gloria Steinem wrote and directed the Cameron Diaz vehicle The Sweetest Thing has there been such an important comedy film for and about womyn (that was written and directed by a man). This is the most important 96 minutes of Ms. Fey's career, but also in the history of our gender war. It's important that we go into the theater informed, so we may properly participate in this historic debate. After the jump find a small digest of the film's reviews.
- The New York Times' Manohla Dargis would like to remind you that this film is about women: "Basically she's Rhoda with thinner thighs, which I guess means that she's Mary Richards. But this being 2008 and not the women's-liberated 1970s, it isn't enough for Kate to be a swinging single: she wants a baby and she wants it now. Enter Angie Ostrowiski (Ms. Poehler). At 36 Ms. Poehler is at least 10 years too old for the role, as the softly focused close-ups suggest, but she's a pip." A pip is what my mom calls old ladies who dance or say dirty words or know what the internet is. Also, Ms. Fey, your time is running out: "Real funny women — Mae West, Elaine May — come along every few decades, so the timing seems right. But the clock is ticking."
- Wesley Morris of ye olde colonial pape the Boston Globe finds a spirit of hope and change in an otherwise flat movie: "Baby Mama is less than a perfect movie - it's shoddily assembled, and McCullers's coincidence-driven script, smart as it sometimes is, rushes us out the door. But in this era of Apatow and Ferrell and Rogen and Wilson, of men monopolizing movie comedy, Baby Mama feels absurdly momentous, and even political. Fey and Poehler aren't just taking back control of their bodies. They're taking back control of their profession." Absurdly momentous!
- The Village Voice's Robert Wilonsky manages to avoid the whole lady topic, and instead meanders off in a criticism of Lorne Michaels' producing abilities: "Baby Mama extends the joke, then softens it, then smothers it in its crib—an unpleasant picture perhaps, but not any more disagreeable than the phrase 'Produced by Lorne Michaels.' Ultimately, that's all this shrugging disappointment is: a Saturday Night Live sketch stretched a good hour past its breaking point of no return." Maybe it's because he's a sexist and has to talk about the powerful man behind the ladies instead of talking about the ladies. That must be it.
- The New York Post's Lou Lumenick caps off an otherwise reasonable review with a complete piece of shit line: "Men who are coerced into seeing this chick flick may feel like they've been attached to an estrogen drip." I mean, not piece of shit. It's very insightful. About women. And men. And inverted versus dangling genitalia. And babies and other stuff.