J.D. Lafrance
Win a Date with Tad Hamilton! DVD Review

Win a Date with Tad Hamilton!

November 30, 2004

Director: Robert Luketic,
Starring: Kate Bosworth, Topher Grace, Josh Duhamel, Nathan Lane, Sean Hayes, Gary Cole, Ginnifer Goodwin, Kathryn Hahn, Octavia Spencer, Amy Smart, Ren Trostle, Wendy Worthington, Stephen Tobolowsky, Moon Bloodgood, Mary Jo Smith, ,

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DVD Review

J.D. Lafrance

It must be everyone’s fantasy to be dating his or her favourite sexy movie star and for Kate Bosworth’s Rosalee that fantasy is about to come true when she discovers a competition to win a date with Tad Hamilton. Her dreams are fulfilled when she wins but fails to realise that this arrangement is has been set up by Tad’s scheming managers to try and eradicate his bad boy image in the press.

As always in these rom-coms, there’s the sweet yet highly annoying best friend Pete, who has been dragged along to every Tad Hamilton flick against his will. He endures the ninety minutes of celluloid cheese because he is in love with Rosalee. He has never told her, although it couldn’t be more obvious, and she’s too dim to notice even when he warns her to ‘guard her carnal treasure’ whilst on her date with the tinsel town stud.

The twist is, and although you can see it a mile off, most welcome when Tad announces that he actually likes Rosalee. The conflict has been set-up, their values are different – she has them, but instead of some comedic stalker action while avoiding the tabloids, he opts for the up-front approach and we are left watching the pathetic best friend whine away for the rest of the movie.

After an impressive performance in ‘Blue Crush’, Kate Bosworth’s career looked both healthy and promising, so why on earth did she decide to accept a small chick flick that is full of one-dimensional characters and fails to capitalise on the originality that is clearly there? Josh Duhamel of TV’s ‘Las Vegas’, fits into the role of the Hollywood hunk quite convincingly but fails to charm, as the script calls for his portrayal to be too nice and flawless and it’s difficult to believe he ever had the bad boy image he is trying so hard to shake.

‘Win a date with Tad Hamilton’ is aimed at the pre-pubescent female and if they have never seen a direct-by-numbers rom-com before this is the perfect place to start and they will be entertained throughout its formulaic and predictable development. With helmer Robert Luketic behind the wheel, who seemed to have successfully turned crap to gold with Legally Blonde, so much more was expected from this bag of potential.

The most commendable element is the fact that they story doesn’t lose its own sense of irony, as we see art imitating life imitating art, but it never flourishes to the extremes that the other genres have gone to in the last decade. These scenes include when Rosalee romanticise about Tad Hamilton and when Tad uses lines from his own movies as chat up lines. The climax is also a predictable bag of clich├ęs except for one moment when we are genuinely shocked by the maturity of the script but a second later, it turns out to be a clever bit of misdirection.

Special Features

What this disc needs to really sell the film is a good set of extra features and we’re off to a poor start with the absence of a commentary and trailers. So with low hopes the looming deleted scenes are likely to be unbearable, but we leave pleasantly surprised. Some are pointless but we are introduced to an alternative opening and for some reason most of Tad’s managers’ funniest moments have all been cut. We are also treated to an extended ending that is even sappier than the original one. There is also a lengthy gag reel that amounts to nothing more than silly faces and inappropriate laughing.

J.D. is a freelance writer who is currently doing research for a book on the films of Michael Mann. He likes reading anything written by Jack Kerouac, James Ellroy, J.D. Salinger, Harlan Ellison or Thomas Pynchon. J.D. is currently addicted to the T.V. series 24 and enjoys drinking a lot of Sprite. This is not a blatant plug for the beverage but if they ever decided to give him a lifetime supply he certainly wouldn’t turn them down.
view all DVD reviews by JD Lafrance


Rating: 46%



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