Tuesday, January 06, 2009

FYC: Kristen Wiig in Ghost Town

In Ghost Town, Kristen Wiig doesn't do anything different from her usual Saturday Night Live schtick (the same schtick she schticked in Knocked Up). The schtick is still f*cking funny and it works in this movie, which is a charming soft-shoe into the afterlife. Wiig plays a surgeon who prepares and administers a colonoscopy to Ricky Gervais. Talk about a great comic setup.

She has two scenes -- before and after anesthesia -- and in both she exploits her masterful deadpan and clipped cadence. She's delightfully flippant in both, and adds a bit of verbal slapstick that mixes nicely with Gervais' straight man routine. Actually, when the two are sparring over whether or not Gervais died briefly during the procedure, you can't really tell who is the straight man:

WIIG: Ehhhverybody dies.
GERVAIS: Yes, but at the ends of their lives, and usually just the once.
WIIG: Ehhhverybody's different.

What a curious repeat pair of line readings. What a curious comic actor. If this is the one note Wiig has in her repertoire, then at least she can take heart that it's a good one. There are those who might say her appearance in Ghost Town is too brief to elevate it from cameo to supporting, but I say who cares. Supporting is supporting, not "second lead." It's the small gems, the quicksilver laughs. Wiig delivers them here.

This post is part of StinkyLulu's Supporting Actress Blogathon. What actor would you nominate in the category?


Popcorn and Cigarettes said...

You know I thought this film was fun and pretty decent overall, but I have always thought that Kristen Wiig was absolutely the best thing about the whole film.

My attention was always on her during her time onscreen so I would not miss anything she said or did. Her discussion with the other doctors about her new tan is hilarious.

jakey said...

Be sure to catch her in "Treasureland" should that movie ever see the day ... I saw a test screening of it in NYC last spring and she was a standout.

Jeanette said...

As if she couldn't be any more enjoyable, I was once seated next to her at a restaurant (known for its grilled corn drenched in butter and cheese!) and watched her eat at least 1/3 more than myself, yet maintains that girlish figure.

elgringo said...

I think I liked this movie more than most and Wiig was one of the best parts of it. Same old thing she usually does but you're right, it's still really funny.

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Information Review said...

Ghost Town" is an okay film. I liked it from the moment I saw it. It's a nice friendly film and grownups would like this for a good date movie.

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