Everyone loves Bill Murray. Don’t try to dispute it: you know you do. And if you watched Jimmy Kimmel’s latest interview with him, you know that Bill Murray also knows this (but in true Bill Murray fashion, he’s somehow genuinely humble about it). Thankfully, the funnyman is back in a new comedy alongside another fan favorite comedian Melissa McCarthy (if you’re missing her, be sure to catch up on all seven seasons of Gilmore Girls, now streaming on Netflix). Their film St. Vincent tells the story of a strange “cantankerous old cuss” named Vincent (Murray) who meets a young boy and the two become inseparable. According to PluggedIn’s Paul Asay, “the film has a nice heart but a messed-up head, and while Vincent's actions aren't meant to be aspirational, they're still not particularly beneficial to watch.” Asay is referring to the film’s crude content, namely an over-indulgent amount of profanity, over the top violence, and other “unremitting bad behavior.” Aside from Vincent’s lewd behavior, the message of the film is as simple and obvious as the character’s “St”: Just like Vincent, “we are more than our vices. We are less than our virtues.” The New York Times’ Manohla Dargis admits St. Vincent “has a couple of things going for it, mostly Bill Murray.” She says, “he scrooge is a particularly durable type” and “it’s a character that Mr. Murray knows something about, having played a version in the 1988 comedy Scrooged.” Although the character may be overdone, Murray portrays him better than those that have come before, because he “pulls out something human.”
While many fall shows have already been forgotten by viewers, or more likely will never be seen, on October 20, the CW premiered its last new show Jane the Virgin. The Monday night melodrama tells the story of a modern-day Mother Mary who finds herself unexpectantly pregnant, although she practices celibacy (no spoilers as to how she’s impregnated). It’s a sort of twist on the telenovela, and so it’s loaded with drama. But, according to Paul Asay of PluggedIn, much like Hart of Dixie, “it's silly and salacious, and the show is proud of that.” Asay refers to the show as “pure,” although Jane the Virgin “isn't shy about its negative content issues. But there's a certain wholesomeness that clings to it despite all those problems, and we owe a lot of that to Jane herself.” Asay points out that Jane and her fiancé are saving sex for marriage (in total contrast to every other character on the CW) and the word “God” is thrown about with ease, but not in an inappropriate way. Asay believes that Jane herself is “witty and charming and refreshingly normal—three characteristics you rarely see connected with virgin in movies or television.” Variety’s Brian Lowry says that aside from “a few problematic” areas, Jane the Virgin contains a secret ingredient that is in short supply, perhaps especially on many of the CW’s recent soaps: “charm.” The show boasts of a Latin-fueled cast, and much of the culture mimics the Venezuelan television series on which it’s based. Jane the Virgin follows The Originals and The Flash, two of the network’s newer shows that prove the CW is pretty good “in terms of developing new dramas that look poised to stick around for a while.”
Larisa Kline is an intern with Christianity Today Movies and a student at The King’s College in New York City.
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