It seems I can no longer rent terrible movies. I mean, I thought that out of the hundreds I watch each and every month that at least one would be a bad movie. Not so. Case in point: Mannequin, starring the ravishing Kim Cattrall and the far-from-idiotic Andrew McCarthy is one of the best movies I've seen in quite some time.
The story goes like this: In ancient Egypt, a wild, reckless, blonde American-Egyptian named Emmy pleaded with God to let her live forever—or at least until she can experience life and find true love. God, being the magician he is, decides to grant her the wish—but with one caveat: she must live with a curse her entire life. Evidently the curse is being a mannequin throughout history. Who knew ancient Egypt had mannequins?! In a cute, expertly animated intro we learn that Emmy has been a part of almost every milestone in human history. Da Vinci's muse? Check. Christopher Columbus' new world expedition? Check. First woman to wear a sanitary napkin? Check. In short, she's been around.
Now, in the present day, sad-sack loser Jonathan can't seem to keep a job. See, he's an "artist" and artists are too lazy to hold down actual jobs. He "creates" a very familiar looking mannequin and dubs her his masterpiece mere moments from yet another firing. His girlfriend, Snotty, has HAD it with his miserable little life and dumps him because he can't find and hold down a decent job. During a super-sweet, tear-jerking montage of Jonathan scraping his knuckles along the sidewalk as he mopes around town, he stumbles across his masterpiece in a shop window.
After practically making love to the window, he saves the life of the store owner, Sophia Petrillo (before she moved to Florida and roomed with those crazy geriatric ladies) and is offered a job. He quickly rises in the ranks from janitor to head window dresser. Evidently in this alternate universe, the Window will either make or break your business. His new partner in window dressing crime is the not at all stereotypical asexual gay man named Hollywood, played with flair and gusto by Meshach Taylor (before moving to Georgia to work with those crazy designing women).
Emmy, after evidently hibernating for many centuries and only now coming to life again (because Jonathan created her, duh), is REALLY excited about the 20th century. She hang glides, dances, wears skimpy lingerie, poses for photos, only comes to life when just Jonathan is around, and helps design some of the most horrendous window displays of the 80s. In this universe, though, the windows prove to be a big hit and the store starts raking in record profits.
This, of course, irks smarmy Mr Richards (a lively James Spader), Sophia's right hand and principal back-stabber, and the store security guard (GW Bailey, fresh off his Police Academy duties). Mr Richards is in cahoots with the competing department store to bring down Sophia and her cherished family business. It just so happens that Snotty works for said department store (Sparkle Motion, or something like that).
Mad cap comedy, and hi-larious hijinks ensue. Will Jonathan foil Mr Richards and his dastardly plan? Will Emmy ever become "real" to anyone but Jonathan? Will Mr Richards murder the inept security guard and pin the crime on Jonathan? Will Jonathan finally rid himself of his virgin status and make sweet, sweet love to plastic? Will Snotty steal Emmy and chop her up in a massive paper-shredder? Will Hollywood be able to kick some ass and not break a nail? Find out the answer to some of these questions, and scratch your head at many, many more in this delightful PG-rated romp.
Top-shelf acting, a whip-smart script, and quick pacing lift this movie to nearly Razzie-award winning caliber. I give it an A-.