Pregnant Pause

13 Apr

In the category of Pleasant Comedies, you can add Baby Mama. It’s a better than average film, with some decent laughs — none of which come close to, say, Forgetting Sarah Marshall — that’s never quite as good as you want it to be. That’s because the script isn’t as sharp as it should be; unfortunately, it strands stars Tina Fey and Amy Poehler in Mediocre Land. We’ve definitely seen them better on “Weekend Update” back on Saturday Night Live.

Baby Mama is the story of Kate (Fey), a successful single woman who has decided that after years of putting her career first, she now wants a baby. Learning that she is unable to conceive, Kate hires Angie (Poehler), a working-class woman of questionable morals, to be her surrogate. This seems like a setup that could let Fey make fun of celebrity adoptions and career women and other timely subjects. If she had written the script, maybe she would have. But instead, writer/director Michael McCullers aims his arrows at subjects like Jamba Juice and Whole Foods–like stores, and they don’t really stick. Fey and Poehler have real chemistry and are generally enjoyable to watch — more so than Steve Martin, who looks embarrassed in an unbilled role as Kate’s boss — but they almost look pained to be put in such lame situations. Hopefully these two will get the chance to star in a Fey-written comedy in the future. (That is, another Fey-written comedy — both appeared in Mean Girls.) For now, their Baby Mama only rates a B– from me.

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