Time for a skeleton in my movie critic closet. Ok. Here it goes…
“Over Her Dead Body” is one of my guilty pleasures. On rottentomatoes.com, the film has a 15% freshness rating, meaning 85% of the critics around the world think it blows, but for some reason, I liked it.
A lot of that credit goes to the leads. The vastly underrated Lake Bell gets a starring role working alongside the likeable and dependable Paul Rudd (“This is 40“) and Eva Longoria, who I’m surprised hasn’t become a bigger film star. So here’s the review slightly modified from the original 2008 version.
Guys don’t so much hate romantic comedies, but the goofy coincidences that lead to a couple having some wacky interactions, the stupid misunderstanding and the emotional reunion all in time for a wedding before the end credits roll.
In the surprisingly entertaining, “Over Her Dead Body,” the order’s a bit reversed as it kicks off with the wedding…or at least the insanity leading up to it.
Bridezilla Kate (Eva Longoria Parker) is on the warpath the day of her wedding, but gets killed in a freak accident.
Her fiance, Henry (Rudd), is still grieving a year later and his sister, Chloe (the equally under-appreciated Lindsay Sloane, “She’s Out of My League”), figures the best way to get him out of his funk is to take him to a psychic who will tell him that Kate is just fine and it’s time for him to get on with his life.
The psychic, Ashley (Bell), isn’t able to “speak” with Kate, but definitely connects with Henry, who is just as taken with her.
Rudd is normally cast as the sidekick, but he shows he can handle the lead role just as well. Director/Writer Jeff Lowell (“Hotel for Dogs”) plays up Rudd’s quick-wit delivery well for big laughs and Bell is surprisingly funny and comes out looking like a star on the rise. Sloane and Jason Biggs (“American Pie”) excel in the sidekick roles making the most off their eccentric characters.
Just as things start looking promising for Henry and Ashley, she’s visited by Kate’s ghost, who’s convinced the reason she’s not in heaven is because she has to break up the happy couple. That leads to one of the more interesting love triangles you’ll see.
Too many romantic comedies try too hard to stand out with overly complicated plots and goofy subplots, but the formula is a pretty simple one that works with just a few tweaks.
This isn’t some life-changing romantic comedy, but it’s funny enough, has charming leads and breezes by in its quick 97 minutes. You have to work to find it as I never see it show up on cable, but it’s worth watching on a lazy, rainy weekend.
Rating: 5.5 out of 10