The Nines

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The Nines

Charlie’s Angels screenwriter delivers witty head-scratcher of a ?lm

Release Date: Aug. 31
Director/Writer: John August
Cinematographer: Nancy Schreiber
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Hope Davis, Melissa McCarthy
Studio/Run Time: Newmarket Films, 99 mins.

As a feature directorial debut, The Nines is sharper than I’d expect from the guy who wrote the Charlie’s Angels movies, but still, it peaks early.

Consisting of three segments that star the same three actors playing three roles each, the ?lm begins with Ryan Reynolds as a TV star on house arrest for possession of crack, Melissa McCarthy as a publicist keeping an eye on him, and Hope Davis as the bored housewife next door. Over the backyard fence, Davis smirks that she, too, is on house arrest, an example of the witty bite that writer/director John August weaves in so effortlessly. The characters make knowing references to Misery, but the ?lm’s charm begins to evaporate in the gimicky second act and then vanishes entirely in the dreamy sci-? ?nale that tries to link everything together and blow some minds. August is on solid ground when he’s riffing on Stephen King and celebrities, but he’s stretching when he tries to be David Lynch, which would require a distinctly different kind of brain damage than this Hollywood screenwriter can simulate.