Wrong Girl. Wrong Place. Wrong Film.
The opening titles tell you that One for the Money is based on the 1994 Janet Evanovich novel, which was a long-running bestseller much like its successors. The protagonist, Stephanie Plum may be any girl’s role model on paper, but in this cocky film adaptation, she upsets big time. One for the Money is a perfect example for what goes wrong in film adaptations. Converting a 250-page novel into a 90-minute film can be a pain in the neck for the writers. But, watching it onscreen is a pain in the backside for us.
Sometime ago, I found the novel on a corner rack of a bustling bookstore. The cover had been changed to the film’s poster and the words “New York Times Bestseller”, “Now A Major Motion Picture” were written all over it. As I began reading, I realized that Stephanie Plum was way better on paper. I doubt if Katherine Heigl understood the role before choosing to play it.
Screen adaptations of chick novels don’t work most of the time. Exhibit A – Eat, Pray Love. Exhibit B – Something Borrowed. Like I mentioned earlier, there are 3 novels that feature Stephanie Plum. But, I’m guessing Hollywood isn’t interested as this film is a box office failure. And why? Here are some reasons:
The warrants issued for bail jumpers come with the ‘Dead or Alive’ clause. I don’t know about you, but the last time that happened, Clint Eastwood strolled into a saloon and killed a notorious gangster in For A Few Dollars More. Secondly, it’s impossible to digest the fact that revolvers fire more than fifteen rounds without the necessity to reload. It is during this gunfight sequence that Heigl jumps around in slow motion, dodging bullets as girlie pop plays in the background. And then, upon arresting the bail jumper, comes the dialogue “You’re under arrest for bail jumping.”
One for the Money speaks its title. If you want to risk your money for this film, good luck! But, don’t come crying crocodile tears on how awful it was and how badly you need your money back.