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Frat Pack Tribute Movie Preview: Baby Mama

Synopsis

Successful and single businesswoman Kate Holbrook (Tina Fey) has long put her career ahead of a personal life. Now 37, she's finally determined to have a kid on her own. But her plan is thrown a curve ball after she discovers she has only a million-to-one chance of getting pregnant. Undaunted, the driven Kate allows South Philly working girl Angie Ostrowiski (Amy Poehler) to become her unlikely surrogate. Simple enough ...

After learning from the steely head of their surrogacy center that Angie is pregnant, Kate goes into precision nesting mode: reading childcare books, baby-proofing the apartment and researching top pre-schools. But the executive's well-organized strategy is turned upside down when her Baby Mama shows up at her doorstep with no place to live. An unstoppable force meets an immovable object as structured Kate tries to turn vibrant Angie into the perfect expectant mom. In a battle of wills, they will struggle their way through preparation for the baby's arrival. And in the middle of this tug-of-war, they'll discover two kinds of family: the one you're born to and the one you make

Screening Report

by "Manhattan Movie Buff"

Last weekend I had the opportunity to attend an advanced screening of an upcoming Tina Fey comedy called Baby Mama which has several Frat friendly performances. The film was written by first time director Michael McCullers who was a "Saturday Night Live" writer and also wrote two of the Austin Powers films.

With New York City locations doubling for Philadelphia, Tina Fey plays Kate, a working woman in her mid 30's who hires a surrogate to carry her child after being told she has no chance of having one on herself. The owner of the surrogacy clinic is played by Sigourney Weaver who nails her haughty, upper class character in much the way she did in "The TV Set." She pairs Kate with a surrogate named Angie, played by Amy Poehler. Anyone who watched SNL while Fey and Poehler were cohosts for Weekend Update know how terrific their chemistry is and much of the film's success lays in their rapport.

Angie's common law husband is Carl played by Dax Shepherd in white trash scoundrel mode. I believe the movie was filmed before Dax and Kate Hudson were dating, but one line in particular stood out since Amy and Dax's characters made a reference to Kate. Carl is much more interested in the money to be gained by hiring out Angie's services than anything else. Inevitably Angie decides to leave Carl and moves into to Kate's apartment and uproots Kate's life in the process. It's almost like the flip side of Knocked Up with two mismatched people thrown together preparing for a baby. One hysterical scene involves the not too bright Angie unable to open the toilet after Kate has prematurely baby proofed the everything in sight.

Romany Malco is absolutely hysterical as Oscar, Kate's doorman. His character's speech pattern and delivery reminded me a lot of his role in The 40 Year Old Virgin. Oscar has some of the best laugh out loud moments.

Kate works for a Whole Foods-like organic grocery store and Steve Martin plays her incredibly kooky boss. At one point he rewards her efforts with "five minutes of uninterrupted eye contact" pressing his forehead to hers and gazing intently. While looking for locations for a new flagship store Kate meets a local merchant Rob (Greg Kinnear). Once they begin to date, Kate is torn about whether or not to tell him a surrogate is having her child.

I won't got too much into the details of the plot, but I thought it was rather unpredictable at times and laughed quite a bit. I like Tina Fey a lot and with such a stellar supporting cast, including a couple of SNL cameos, I think there's great box office potential with Baby Mama, although I expect it may skew more to a female audience.

Currently Universal is planning for an April 2008 release.

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