Posted on June 12, 2011
Movie Review: Starcrossed With James Spader
**1/2 (out of 5)
Starcrossed is a bad ’80s made for TV movie. However if you are like me when you hear bad with ’80s and TV movie you probably get more excited than turned off. If it has all of those classic cheese factors it has to be so bad it’s good, right? Well, no not really.
Recently I added a few old James Spader movies to my Netflix Instant queue that I hadn’t seen. I watched White Palace last month, which was fantastic and I will be including in an upcoming Netflix Instant Streaming list. However I just got to Starcrossed. Wow. The film stars an incredibly young looking 25 year old James Spader as Joey Callaghan who becomes the protector of an alien named Mary (played by Belinda Bauer, no I had never heard of her either). I had no idea until I just took a good look at his filmography that he appeared in a 1/2 dozen TV movies before he became famous.
The movie starts out strong with this awesome, pink neon font for the opening credits. Plus Spader drives this bad ass pink car. He knows how bad ass it is too cuz he mentions it to this clueless alien.
Then they start talking. He thinks that she must be from Europe because she has an unusual accent. When she actually gets to say more than a word or 2 though she has too many accents. I hear at least upper crust British, Swedish and Data at different times. Speaking of Data, her performance is quite robotic most of the time but I think that was a conscious decision from what she says about aliens in the movie.
Unfortunately sometimes Spader also has some type of New York or Jersey accent. There is a particularly painful scene in which he even says fuggedaboutit. Plus I can’t buy him as a mechanic.
Seriously, these guys are more believable as alien mercenaries who are hunting her down. Side note: did the costumer designer on Dude, Where’s My Car? totally lift their look or what?
About a half hour into this movie I thought about flipping it off for the next 10 minutes. But I couldn’t, Spader was just too cute. Plus, aside from the accent thing he really acts his ass off in this movie, just like in his future roles. Of course you can’t just tell someone that you are an alien, you have to demonstrate, so she shows off her telekinesis, telepathy and uh, snow making abilities at different times in the film.
While watching you’re never really sure what they want the movie to be, it’s not campy enough, it’s definitely not hard sci-fi and sometimes Spader is so moony over this chick for no reason that it feels like a Harlequin novel if not for the fact that the alien lacks passion. Plus there’s a couple of scenes with Christianity stuffed into them.
Then this guy (who reminds me of James Van Der Beek) and Spader are sharing a beer (in a kick ass bottle) and his friend actually starts referencing Splash (which came out the year before). Then it hits you, they thought they were making the next fucking Splash, hysterical.
Why haven’t I populated this post with a bunch of pics of the alien? Ugh, they dressed her so ugly. I hate this leather coat with a passion. The pants are neat but most of her clothes are both hideous and ill fitting.
Wait, if she looks this bad there has to be an awesome makeover montage coming up, right? Pre-Van Der Beek even mentions that he brought some clothes and makeup for her from his girlfriend. However most of the makeup is gross, used nail polish like my mother used to give me to play with when I was 5 and then the silly bitch does this! WTF?
Considering that it’s for a made for TV movie from the ’80s the special effects aren’t bad. Believe me, I’ve made my way through at least half of Costas Mandylor‘s filmography so I’ve seen some piss poor TV effects.
Wait if the special effects are that good then the space ship must be amazing, right?
Uh, no that’s the planetarium. This is the spaceship. Say what?
Since you know that I’m a pervert you are probably wondering when I will get to the G-rated sex scene. Well here it is, seriously this chick lacks fire at all. The stills are sexier than the actual scene. However it’s been my experience that Spiderman kissing shit only works in movies and what type of cinematographer goes “perfect, that’s a sexy armpit”?
I should also mention that there isn’t any sex on her planet but she explains that she’s ready for it because she watched this instructional cartoon.
So if you really love Spader you might want to watch this once. It also strikes me as the type of thing you could watch with your daughter.
Now gratuitous Spader!
(photos are clickable to full size)
Another Spader fan capped a lot more than me, over on this forum if you want to see more cute pics of him from the movie.