The Lay Of The Land

  • 1997
  • Movie
  • R
  • Comedy, Drama

Sally Kellerman takes a break from her busy commercial career as the voice behind America's salad dressings to star in this aggressively incompetent feature from director Larry Arrick. Kellerman plays M.J., a high-strung documentary filmmaker with a stalled career and a nasty-looking psychosomatic rash on her hand. M.J. suspects husband Harvey (Ed Begley...read more

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Reviewed by Ken Fox
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Sally Kellerman takes a break from her busy commercial career as the voice behind America's salad dressings to star in this aggressively incompetent feature from director Larry Arrick. Kellerman plays M.J., a high-strung documentary filmmaker with a stalled career and

a nasty-looking psychosomatic rash on her hand. M.J. suspects husband Harvey (Ed Begley Jr.) of infidelity, and her fears aren't entirely unfounded: Harvey, a Russian Lit professor deep in a serious midlife crisis, has been dallying with Muriel (Sandra Taylor), a pneumatic grad student who gets

all tingly over the Russian Symbolists. M.J. first turns to a psychiatrist (Tyne Daly), then to an amorous private investigator (Stuart Margolin) for help in pulling her crumbling world back together. Bad movie-buffs will have a field day: You name it, this film gets it wrong. Cinematography?

Random. Editing? One scene is cut off in mid-sentence. Script? A complete howler -- Begley actually quips, "Pushkin is something you can't rush-kin." Acting? Kellerman (who also croons the title song) is only inches from hysteria, and Taylor projects the kind of smutty charm that's usually

reserved for the direct-to-video market. Daly, who adopts various guttural accents, is simply grotesque. In one of a long series of inexplicable fantasy sequences, she appears as Sherlock Holmes, menacingly sucking her pipe while snarling, "She's a [unintelligible] whore!" at no one in particular.

Scary stuff.

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  • Released: 1997
  • Rating: R
  • Review: Sally Kellerman takes a break from her busy commercial career as the voice behind America's salad dressings to star in this aggressively incompetent feature from director Larry Arrick. Kellerman plays M.J., a high-strung documentary filmmaker with a stalle… (more)

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