Who's In It: Demi Moore, David Duchovny, Amber Heard, Ben Hollingsworth, Gary Cole, Glenne Headly, Lauren Hutton
The Basics: Four people posing as a perfect family move into a suburban McMansion neighborhood. Their mission is to stealth-sell luxury products to upscale consumers for a marketing company. They're sharks, only motivated to sell the idea of the good life so they can make their quotas. And then blah blah blah owning stuff won't save your soul blah all you need is love etc. Shocker. Way to kill that dark comedy you were going for.
What's The Deal: No joke, like five minutes into the story the script hands you the thread that starts the unraveling process, as David Duchovny, a rookie salesman, stares all wet-eyed at his "wife"/boss Demi Moore and starts to fall for her. And then the young woman acting as their daughter turns out to be an emotionally immature sexual predator and the "son" has a secret, too. So what you spend the movie wondering is why, if Demi Moore's character is so good at her job, did she hire these amateurs for such a high-stakes project? And why does she allow herself to get tangled up in their unprofessionalism? It yanks the movie's legs out from under it and turns what's supposed to be a satire into a heavy-handed message movie about "what's really important" where actors actually utter lines like "I should have listened to my heart." Next time this cast should listen to their agents instead.
When It's Okay To Walk Out: Well, you'll want to see the big tragedy-climax that prompts David Duchovny's mea culpa speech, because it's so dorky you'd think it was written for an episode of Full House. But right after that you can bail and theater hop.
Real Housewives Of Atlanta Cameo Alert: Shot in Georgia, on location in a neighborhood of homes so big you could turn them into emergency shelters for entire towns. So blink and you'll miss tall blonde Kim in a party scene. Nene would have been a cooler "get," but you take your fun where you find it in a movie like this.
Better Films About The Deadening Consequences Of Consumerism And The Brutality Of Capitalism: The densely packed documentary The Corporation and the rollicking satire Josie & The Pussycats. You think I'm kidding about that last one, I know. But I'm not. It's so much smarter and cooler than anyone ever allowed you to believe. And the songs are great. And it's got Tara Reid.