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April 2006

Ellie Parker DVD Review

By Kam Williams

Ellie Parker DVD Review


Cast: Naomi Watts, Rebecca Riggs, Scott Coffey, Mark Pellegrino, Chevy Chase, See more
Directors: Scott Coffey
Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC
Number of discs: 1
Studio: Strand Home Video
DVD Release Date: April 11, 2006
Run Time: 95 minutes
DVD Features:
Commentary by Writer/Director Scott Coffey
Deleted, Alternate and Bonus Scenes
Original Trailer

DVD Features Naomi Watts in Familiar Role

Naomi Watts always seems to be playing an aspiring actress, whether as the femme fatale at the center of Mulholland Drive, or reprising Fay Wray’s role as Ann Darrow in the recent remake of King Kong. Here, she’s again a thespian as the title character of this comic portrait about a newcomer to Tinseltown trying to find fame in fortune in Hollywood.

The picture marks the promising directorial debut of child actor-turned-writer/director Scott Coffey who you may remember from such coming-of-age classics as Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Some Kind of Wonderful, Space Camp, Shag and Zombie High. Shot on a shoestring budget on personal use-quality videotape, this super-realistic picture has the look of a home movie.

The camera follows Ellie around from audition to audition, by day, and in and out of steamy clinches, by night. This moody mercurial girl chain smokes, swears like a sailor, practices her lines, and agonizes over relationships, friendships, her stalled career, and her manager (Chevy Chase) who’s too blasé to offer much in the way of encouragement.

The only flaw of this flick, which is admittedly amusing in spots, lies in its aforementioned poor quality cinematography which intermittently interferes with one’s ability to concentrate on an otherwise engaging story.

To their credit, Watts and the rest of the cast throw themselves enthusiastically into the often outrageous plotline. Not quite a legit full-length feature, more like a promising film school project which inexplicably happens to have a few A-list actors in it.

Good (2 stars)

Unrated with plenty of profanity, and female frontal nudity, including one fairly graphic sex scene.
Running time: 94 minutes
Studio: Strand Releasing
DVD Extras: Director’s commentary, deleted scenes and a theatrical trailer.