The Proposal


Sandra’s new in town…

Thinner than a Twiglet and glossier than a conker, Sandra Bullock lies the lag for it, 40-ish womanhood in this high-end New York romcom, but even the adorable princess of pratfalls can’t get much spin on this smart but saggy, would-be screwball tale.

As Canadian publishing uber-bitch Margaret, blackmailing her amiable young assistant Andrew (Ryan Reynolds) into agreeing to marry her when she’s threatened with deportation, Bullock waves her Blackberry Devil Wears Prada-style, but somehow lacks the necessary cut-throat conviction.

She’s on safer, albeit sappier, ground with the predictable fish-out-of water schtick that director Anne Fletcher (27 Dresses) gifts her for the couple’s nuptial trip to Andrew’s dysfunctional Alaskan family, goofily busting dance moves through a shamanic ritual, or fending off a small-town male stripper with exquisite embarrassment.

Sandy may have the lion’s share of screen time, but it’s Reynolds, deploying that deadpan charm he’s been honing since Van Wilder, who threatens to steal the movie. His crisp comedic delivery puts the charge into their sexy, snarky bickering: “You are allergic to coconut shampoo. And the full spectrum of human emotions.”

First-time screenwriter Peter Chiarelli’s dialogue has a wry Big Apple zing that easily outstrips execrable recent odd-couple offerings like What Happens In Vegas or The Accidental Husband. Alas, this deftness cruelly gets up hopes that are then dashed by the film’s by-the-numbers family feuding, its mildly inane immigration imbroglio and a flabby, saccharine wind-down.

Sadly, those long-awaited heartfelt moments turn out as soggy as its boss-vs-drone office sniping was snappy. But chick-flick aficionados will eat it all up, especially the pretty pair’s wet’n’wild slapstick nude scene. Although what they’ll end up applauding is Betty White’s raunchy, conniving Grandma Annie, her razor-sharp timing proving she’s an ever-Golden Girl.


A pedigree cast, fun premise and punchy dialogue make Bullock’s return to romantic comedy look a great catch, and Reynolds is sharper than a diamond solitaire. Pity, then, that its penchant for sentimentality makes it miss congeniality.

Film Details

User Reviews

    • Nealsreviews1

      Jul 3rd 2009, 22:25


      Romantic comedies are predictable most of the time, so it's how we get there that matters "The Proposal" seemed to be getting there with some flames & creativity. Headed by a couple of actors that are not new to the comedic genre. Sandra Bullock & Ryan Reynolds are both well fit for clever bantor, they play off each other quite well right of the top. Although I'm not a huge fan of Sandra Bullock her chemistry with Ryan Reynolds is right on. Margaret(Bullock) is a high powered book editor who is facing deplortation to her hometown of Canada unless she comes up with a plan. A quick thinking exec declares she get engaged to her unsuspecting assistant Andrew (Reynolds) who she has tormented for years. He agrees to help but not without a few conditions of his own. The put on couple heads to Alaska to meet his eccentric family & the big wig city girl finds herself in a fish out of water scenario. Funny moments ensue but the director Anne Fletcher crushes any good will it forms when it takes a predictable turn towards gushy. Neal Damiano Film Critic

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    • johnmoorefan

      Aug 30th 2009, 17:47


      I like Bullock and Reynolds but I don't like this script. The odd one liner aside I was bored to death by the predictable story and mundane slapstick. The trailers make this one look alot better than it is.

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    • jacoblost48

      Nov 28th 2009, 18:49


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      Feb 22nd 2011, 2:15


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    • JohnsonSmith

      Mar 3rd 2011, 13:49

      Generally, Romantic comedies sound conventional most of the time. "The Proposal" appears to be getting there with some flames & originality. It is started by a couple of actors who are not new to the comedic variety. Same Day Loans | Quick cash loans

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