Shortcut to Happiness
July 13, 2007
On the Big Board
|Baldwin overplays the dupe and Hopkins oversells the grand argument. No wonder they didn't put this in theaters.
Once again Hollywood has decided to revisit the classic Faustian tale of a man who makes a pact with the Devil. This time the story features Alec Baldwin as Jabez Stone, a struggling author in contemporary New York City who sells his soul to the Devil for literary success and fame. When he comes to realize the ultimate drawback of his deal he enlists the help of Daniel Webster, played by Anthony Hopkins, to get out of it. To no one's surprise, the Devil, played by Jennifer Love Hewitt, has other plans for Jabez’s soul.
This adaptation of Steven Vincent Benet’s The Devil and Daniel Webster is just one of a number or versions most recently done loosely in the Brendan Fraser vehicle Bedazzled, where Elizabeth Hurley played Mr. Scratch’ Somewhat under-appreciated, it featured a fine, sly, continentally seductive performance by Elizabeth Hurley. I’ll see Shortcut to Happiness, however, just to compare her work against that of the slightly more kittenish quality of Ms. Love Hewitt.
Baldwin, who has shown to be surprisingly adept at comedy in his numerous appearances on Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock, also assumes the responsibilities of director for this movie.
It also features current SNL cast members impressionist/comedian Darrell Hammond and the very funny Amy “No One Knows Who That is, REEGGG!” Poehler. Also in the cast is Jason Lee, who was involved in the divinely themed Kevin Smith film, Dogma. (D. James Ruccio/BOP)