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With: Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Greg Kinnear, Dax Shepard, Romany Malco, Sigourney Weaver, Steve Martin, Maura Tierney, Stephen Mailer, Holland Taylor, James Rebhorn, Denis O'Hare, Kevin Collins, Siobhan Fallon
Written by: Michael McCullers
Directed by: Michael McCullers
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language and a drug reference
Running Time: 99
Date: 04/23/2008

Baby Mama (2008)

2 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Totally PG

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

It would have been so refreshing to see a great girl comedy -- how many can you name? -- but, as written and directed by the very male Michael McCullers (Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, Undercover Brother, etc.), Baby Mama quickly and lazily adopts all the annoying attributes of the usual fare. Kate (Tina Fey) is a 37 year-old, single, successful businesswoman who decides she wants a baby. Her chances of giving birth are slim and adoption is difficult for a single mom, so she pays for a surrogate womb, supplied by the vulgar, trailer-trashy Angie (Amy Poehler). When Angie fights with her common-law husband, Angie moves into Kate's posh apartment. A clever writer could have cooked up some delightful "odd couple"-type stuff for these two, but instead McCullers adopts the usual "snowballing lie" plot, in which one character continues to be dishonest to the other, followed by the big, climatic blowout at some public place (here it's the baby shower). It's just tired, tired stuff. A capable supporting cast helps: Steve Martin as a bizarre, new-agey CEO, Sigourney Weaver as a ludicrously fertile founder of the baby business, and Romany Malco as a doorman. Greg Kinnear is at his most charming as Kate's eventual love interest, but the delightful Marua Tierney is wasted as Kate's sister, and Siobhan Fallon does a really annoying "Babwa Wawters"-type character with a speech impediment. Fey usually fares much better when she hits the typewriter herself. (How about Mean Girls for a great girl comedy?)

DVD Details: Universal's DVD includes a commentary track, with Fey, Poehler, McCullers and producer Lorne Michaels, as well as deleted scenes, an alternate ending, a making-of featurette, and a short featurette about the fact that Fey and Poehler both came from "Saturday Night Live." The two-sided disc includes both the pan-and-scan version and the widescreen, letterbox format.

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