If any celebrity target warranted a hilarious skewering great spoof film, it’d be the vapid pool of reality stars. Their narcissistic eye-roll worthy antics deserve to be mocked for their overinflated sense of self importance. Sadly, Reality Queen! somehow manages to miss the barn size target with a lazy and uninspired alleged comedy that feels as clueless as its subject matter.
The film takes an odd approach with a Paris Hilton-inspired character named London Logo (Julia Faye West). Remember Hilton? Her celebrity peak was by celebrity standards eons ago as she was the poster child for talent-less relatively pretty girls who “build” their empire off a sex tape.
Still, riffing on Paris Hilton in 2020 doesn’t exactly seem like the most timely of spoofs. The Larry King impersonator also feels like taking a trip through a time machine. It’s not like the filmmakers could possibly not understand that TMZ is a far bigger and spoof-worthy presence than King.
To some degree the filmmakers have some idea of their dated concept as they make London’s archenemy a Kardashian-clone Kristy Kim (Candace Kita) complete with her hanger-on sisters and exaggerated posterior. Still, it seems like the more ideal focus would be on Kristy and her clan instead of London worrying about losing her spotlight.
West is game and plays the airhead bimbo blonde perfectly. Granted, it’s not the most demanding role as West just has to play oblivious in every scene and have a little misplaced outrage at the most trivial offense.
Most of the film’s best moments come with West is paired with Kate Orsini, who plays a reporter featuring London for a documentary. Orsini plays the straight woman rightfully questioning London’s ridiculous behavior and hangers-on.
Among the crew is her BFF (Denise Richards), right hand man/cleaner Winston (Loren Lester) and gay stylist Simon Debris (John R. College). I feel bad for Richards, who has gone from co-starring in James Bond films to a co-starring role in this flimsy excuse for a comedy.
At least Mike Tyson had the good sense to make a cash-grab cameo that seems like he shot on his iPhone and sent along to the filmmakers.
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Maybe the biggest surprise is the film has eight credited screenwriters. That’s an impressive amount of writers who could so spectacularly fail to deliver a decent 81-minute comedy. It’s almost scary to think of what jokes were rejected.
Director/co-screenwriter Steven Jay Bernheim doesn’t have a good handle on getting in and out with a joke. Occasionally, he’ll stumble onto a funny moment and miss the ideal time to end the scene or follow-it up properly. Granted, those jokes that actually land are far and few between so it’s not like Bernheim had a ton of opportunities to string together consecutive funny scenes.
This isn’t the kind of film that should feel low-budget since it’s a simple comedy and doesn’t have any significant financial demands. There are a few scenes that seem like they were done on the cheap, but for the most part the production values are solid.
Reality Queen! feels like too easy a concept to mess up making it all the more surprising it’s such a spectacular and painfully unfunny comedy. There’s nothing to see here with this spoof that manages to be just as shallow as its subject matter.
Rating: 1 out of 10
Photo Credit: High Octane Pictures