Sweet Home Alabama (Widescreen) product details page

Sweet Home Alabama (Widescreen)

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After a string of edgy and often deliberately unsympathetic performances in such films as Freeway, American Psycho, and Election, Reese Witherspoon was probably as surprised as anyone that America was ready to let her become its latest sweetheart. But after the runaway success of Legally Blonde, the budding superstar stuck to safe, fairy-tale material with this mostly winning romantic comedy. Populated by lovable eccentrics and plain but good folks, Sweet Home Alabama's Pigeon Creek is indistinguishable from any number of other sanitized, fictional Southern towns. But Witherspoon, with her kewpie countenance and iron spine, differs just enough from the conventional leading lady to remove the aftertaste from the saccharine material. Taking her cues from the conniving Julia Roberts school of heroines rather than the blander Meg Ryan variety, she drinks, cusses, and condescends her way to a perverse likability. The more she resembles a Jerry Springer guest, the more the audience cheers her on. The film's reassuring "I'm okay, you're okay" geographic relativism may not play well to self-satisfied Manhattanites, but it sure goes down well everywhere else. Heartthrobs Ethan Embry, Patrick Dempsey, and Joshua Lucas provide the requisite broad-based ****** appeal, while everyone from Candice Bergen and Jean Smart to Mary Kay Place supplies laughs and lovable stereotypes. Jewel chimes in with the inevitable Lynyrd Skynyrd cover, and boom -- something safe for everyone, like all the best blockbusters. Brian J. Dillard, All Movie Guide