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Week of April 10, 2002

The Sweetest Thing. Roger Kumble. Directed by a focus group of 17-year-old boys (and their younger sisters, maybe) who titter at the mention of the word "punany" and guffaw at the sight of Selma Blair caught on a cock ring, this is romantic comedy for audiences who find the films of the Farrellys too stodgy and the movies of the Weitzes too sentimental. It drips with empty-headed cynicism (audiences are fucking stupid, check) and copious jizz jokes; a dry cleaner licks the crusty white stain on Blair's dress in front of a priest and her elementary-school teacher -- what fun! Other highlights include talk of vaginal freshness, anal leakage and the double-barreled sight gag that involves Christina Applegate's taking a leak in a men's-room urinal while Cameron Diaz gets dicked in the eye. (Billy Wilder would be proud.) Neither clever nor subversive, the movie's merely tricked-up and sicked-up to cover what's essentially the oldest story ever told: Diaz, playing Christina Walters, is a Bay Area good-time girl who wants Mr. Right Now and freaks when she meets Mr. Right (61*'s Thomas Jane), who, unbeknownst to her, is on his way to walking down the aisle with Parker Posey (aw, wonder whether it'll last?). The cast's game for anything -- Diaz and Applegate are never more radiant than when discussing the fresh smell of pussy, and Blair will be forever proud of feigning having a cock ring lodged behind her tonsils -- but The Sweetest Thing is also the dumbest thing this side of a lobotomy. Opens April 12 at multiple locations. (RW)

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