Television
Entertainment Television

TV review: 'Liz & Dick' with Lilo is laughable

It's never smart to fill a bad movie with lines that can be turned on the actors, or the production itself.

"I'm bored," says Lindsay Lohan, as screen legend Elizabeth Taylor in "Liz & Dick" (8 p.m. Nov. 25, Lifetime; 1 star out of 4). "I'm soo bored."

So was I.

"I want more," she says in another scene, to which I thought, simultaneously, that I wanted less of this cheesy, off-putting movie but more of the real story behind the volatile romance between Taylor and Richard Burton.

In yet another unintentionally funny scene Lohan--I mean La Liz--exclaims, "I'm a joke!" I'll let anyone guess what I thought after hearing that line.

Taylor and Burton deserve better than this. Viewers deserve better, too. (Although an argument could be made for this becoming everyone's go-to movie for a drinking game.)

Lohan, all pouty lips and puffy cheeks, doesn't capture Taylor's well-known bawdy humor and sexual appetites. She's just a jealous, selfish child. Lohan doesn't even appear to be trying to get Taylor right; her raspy California voice is not even close to Taylor's high-pitched, slightly British accent.

New Zealand actor Grant Bowler fares better as Burton. Although he still has to call Liz things like Ms. Bossy Boots and Mrs. Pudgy Digits, he conveys the pain and envy behind Burton's fiery attitude toward his love.

"Liz & Dick" begins on the set of "Cleopatra," as did Taylor's tumultuous relationship with Burton. It attempts to tell their story from that initial adulterous affair, suicide attempts, courting and loathing of the paparazzi, their two marriages through to its collapse, and the connection they maintained until Burton's death in 1984. (Taylor died in 2011.)

The structure of Christopher Monger's ("Temple Grandin") screenplay fails at every turn. Liz and Dick, dressed in all black and sitting in director's chairs in a dark room, tell rather than show how things went wrong in the 12 years they were together. It's as if they're guests on some heavenly version of "Inside the Actor's Studio." (Or maybe it was filmed in hell? Either way, they're apparently dead but talking to us.)

It's shocking how boring this film about two lives lived with such passion turned out. In the early going, we're inundated with many a bottle-throwing, booze-soaked brawls and rather chaste love scenes. Then, it seems, executive producer Larry A. Thompson and director Lloyd Kramer realized they were running out of time, so they cram marriage No. 2 into the final five minutes along with Lohan's laughable appearance as a mid-'80s, big-haired Taylor.

It's obvious Thompson wanted Lohan as his Liz to draw parallels between the two actresses: They were both child stars who flirted with the paparazzi, addiction and tabloid drama.

But Lohan isn't a star of Taylor's caliber, and "Liz & Dick" is, simply, a joke.


Want more? Discuss this article and others on Show Patrol's Facebook page

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  • 'Liz & Dick' photo gallery

    'Liz & Dick' photo gallery

    "Liz & Dick," Lifetime's stylish yet laughably bad film about the love affair between Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, premieres at 8 p.m. CT Nov. 25 on Lifetime. The biggest news about the film is that Lindsay Lohan plays the troubled screen legend. Grant Bowler ("True Blood") stars as Burton....

  • Lindsay Lohan 'scandalous' as Liz Taylor in Lifetime teaser

    Lindsay Lohan 'scandalous' as Liz Taylor in Lifetime teaser

    The execs at Lifetime network must be grinning from ear-to-ear this week now that Lindsay Lohan, the star of their "Liz & Dick" biopic, has been in the news for certain vehicular issues in New York.

  • New photo of Lilo as Liz Taylor

    New photo of Lilo as Liz Taylor

    Lifetime is in a sharing mood these days, releasing another set of photos Wednesday showing Lindsay Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor in its movie, "Liz & Dick."

  • 1st look at Lindsay Lohan in 'Liz & Dick'

    1st look at Lindsay Lohan in 'Liz & Dick'

    Lifetime on Monday released the first official photo of Lindsay Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor in its movie, "Liz & Dick," showing Lilo and her co-star, Grant Bowler, who plays Richard Burton.

  • November TV premiere dates

    November TV premiere dates

    The Braxton sisters are back this month when Season 2 of "Braxton Family Values" kicks off Nov. 10 on WE tv.

  • Where to go to laugh while The Second City undergoes repairs

    Where to go to laugh while The Second City undergoes repairs

    The early-afternoon fire on Aug. 26 that started in the Adobo Grill restaurant next door to The Second City has forced the historic theater to move or cancel all of its performances in their Mainstage, e.t.c and UP Comedy Club theaters until at least Sunday, Sept. 20, which will mark 26 days without...

  • City to offer ticket, tax amnesty program

    City to offer ticket, tax amnesty program

    Faced with pushing through City Council a massive property tax increase and other fees as part of a 2016 budget, Mayor Rahm Emanuel is trying to slightly soften that politically difficult package by offering an amnesty program for people who have unpaid tickets and back taxes they owe the city.

  • O'Hare noise complaints top 2 million for year

    O'Hare noise complaints top 2 million for year

    Complaints about jet noise from O'Hare International Airport topped 2 million during the first seven months of this year — eight times the number filed in all of 2014, the Chicago Department of Aviation said Friday.

Comments
Loading
74°