Making the Grades
Marriage and religion are up for grabs in this sitcom-like comedy. No doubt the sitcom feel comes from primetime veterans Tim Allen and Kirstie Alley, who do a great job jabbing each others emotions and playing the weak script for as many laughs as they can get.
Allen and Alley (sounds like an accounting firm) play Brad and Caroline Sexton, a Park Avenue couple that have just celebrated ten years of marriage and are on the brink of divorce. A land developer who is never short of ideas to turn dirt into dollars, Brad discovers he has written off more than he can chew and has a $5 million tax debt. With the IRS in hot pursuit, coincidence finds both Sextons in the same cab and they head for the hills where Brad comes up with his next plan: Imitate an Amish couple and move into a colony.
With the fighting and swearing these two engage in, you'd have better luck blending Madonna within the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. And like any Hollywood script where society meets religion, the Amish soon find their values shifting when the Sextons begin to convince them that change is always for the better. Soon Caroline has the women banding together to convince the leaders that color needs to be added to their traditional dresses. Everyone is thrilled with the idea after she presents the colony's first spring fashion show -- complete with runway models.
Fortunately, the Amish have a much greater effect on the Sextons, helping them realize their marriage is worth more than any land development. The script offers some touching moments as the couple begin to find the love they had forgotten, but these scenes pale in comparison to the unnecessary vulgar language. Sexual situations, although between married couples, are also present -- the most frequent being the noises heard each evening in the Sexton's bedroom.
Even with the home improvements the Sextons receive from the Amish, this movie stars a Tim Allen that's richer in profanity and poorer in family values.