Feature

The Proposal

In this romantic comedy, Sandra Bullock is cast as an ice-queen Canadian book editor forced to marry her male assistant (Ryan Reynolds) in order to avoid deportation. 

Directed by Anne Fletcher
(PG-13)

**

A boss from hell forces her assistant into a fake marriage.

Other than perhaps Julia Roberts, Sandra Bullock is “the one enduring star actress of her age,” said Richard Corliss in Time. For many, she “personifies the wholesome, working-class common sense of the ideal friend or girlfriend.” So why does this clever comedian squander her talent in terrible movies? The Proposal isn’t that bad, said Ann Hornaday in The Washington Post. A formulaic romantic comedy “as predictable and comforting as a Happy Meal,” the film is memorable less for its snappy repartee than for its occasional “funny slapstick moments.” Bullock is cast against type as an ice-queen Canadian book editor forced to marry her male assistant (Ryan Reynolds) in order to avoid deportation. This premise promises “some sly gender role-reversal, in which Bullock manipulates her employee” the way male bosses in films once did. But The Proposal reverts to cliché when they jet off to meet his family in Alaska, said Betsy Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times. What saves the film is Reynolds’ skill at delivering lines with “withering surgical precision”—as well as the “delightfully bizarre,” 87-year-old Betty White as Reynolds’ eccentric grandma.

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