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Jul 20, 2011This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Grace and Cordelia, separated at birth? Or is their case similar to that of "The Parent Trap"(the 1961 version starring Hayley Mills), in which they were separated on account of a marital split, like Sally and Sharon, who first lay eyes on each other over milk cartons at a summer camp cafeteria. "The nerve of her, coming here with your face," a fellow camper tells Sally. With this statement, "The Parent Trap" takes on a veneer of absurdism, since the most logical explanation is superseded by a convoluted one. Sally's friend presumes they're doubles before ever entertaining the idea of the two girls being sisters. Another girl suggests that Sally should disfigure her twin("I'd bite off her nose."), advice tantamount to the pre-teen becoming a monster, like a zombie. In their next encounter, from a canoe pulling up dockside, Sally tells Sharon that in profile, she's the "spitting image of Frankenstein," not realizing how the indictment works both ways, since Sharon's face is her face, too. In essence, she's lashing out at herself. The privileged Monterey girl feels ugly inside, intuiting all along that her father wanted a boy. Meeting Sharon confirms her worst suspicions. For Sally, it's like peering into a mirror that she cracks with her feminine, but monstrous agency. Sharon, the more passive of the two, sees what Sally sees, as well: a dead girl, made so due to the inadequacy of being female. From the moment the Bostonian arrives at camp, when the chauffeur passes on her grandmother's instructions about the pills, Sharon only makes mention of the aging matriarch, telling the camp instructor that she needs a "ventilated tent", and how candy can "ruin her teeth" to another girl, words passed along from her doting dowager. It's as if her mother was dead. She's not. Sharon is, metaphorically speaking. To minimize the disappointment of creating girls, both parents pretended to have one daughter apiece, a conspiracy which implies that, in their minds, the other daughter died. A family comedy in form, nevertheless, the pathos inherent in "The Parent Trap" is axiomatic of parental absenteeism. The use of split-screen conjoins the doubled Mills like a Siamese diegesis, so when their parents first see them together, the film retroactively suggests an inverse of Brian DePalma's "Sisters", in which the surviving twin lives on. The film is unaware of the horror a child would certainly feel if their own parent couldn't recognize them. Neither of them notice that they have replacements living in their homes. The girls, down deep inside, must feel like abominations. That's why Sally compares Sharon to Frankenstein. Distracted by Mr. Evers' upcoming marriage to a younger woman, the girls use transference, for the meantime, to allay their fears, in which Vicky serves as the surrogate monster(a gold digger) that they can pour out their loathing toward. Something of an outcast, Grace, in "Monte Carlo", must feel like a monster, too. Unvarying in temperament, approximating Sally's state of denial, Grace, after seeing Cordelia for the first time in a tabloid, en route to the titular country on a private jet, says that she "looks nothing like her," since the society girl staring back at her on the dead page is a diva of monstrous proportions. Since Gomez gets constantly upstaged by her more seasoned co-stars, "Monte Carlo" should have gone the Frankenstein route and made Grace increasingly Cordelia-like with each encounter of deferential treatment by a self-appointed minion. Whereas the sisters "slayed" their "monster" on a camping trip, Grace sublimates her "otherness" by executing the philanthropic duties which Cordelia would normally shirk. But since her adopted persona isn't real, no transference can take place, therefore Grace remains, in her eyes, a misfit, and winds up, rather fittingly, in Romania(the setting for "Dracula"), implying that, despite her good intentions, it was vampiric of the Texan exploit Cordelia's celebrity at the auction. Grace and Cordelia are lookalikes, a premise that suggests itself briefly in "The Parent Trap" where the girls claim no blood relation to each other, much to the disbelief of the counselors who can plainly see that they're virtually identical. The irrational becomes rational, the chaos at hand neutralized, as soon as Sharon shows Sally a picture of their mother, which puts an end to the film being germane to "The Double Life of Veronique" for the long haul. Starring Irene Jacobs as both an opera singer and schoolteacher, the identical women converge only once, when Veronique sees Weronka boarding a bus, snapping pictures, including one of her, like a tourist on vacation. In a sense, "Monte Carlo" plays like the missing link between "The Parent Trap" and "The Double Life of Veronique", since Grace first sees herself in two dimensions, the tabloid photographs on board the plane, as if the films were in a three-way communion.… Expand
Nov 12, 2011Dear Jesus it's happened again.
Another Disney-backed teenager got their own blockbuster movie, and it is terrible.
Selena Gomez' impersonation of herself is basically that of her regular self, a.k.a. **** McGee, with a British Accent. Give me back the two hours of my life. Go read a book or something instead of watching this.