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One for the Money (2012) Review

Review; Mar. 7, 2012; Channels: Movies; By Charles Rector

There are Hollywood stars out there whose behavior and/or viewpoints cause film critics to froth like rabid dogs. Movie reviews read like personal attacks and give the movie in question short shrift. One such actress to attract this kind of hatred is Katherine Heigl, and the movie unfairly maligned is her latest effort, the 2012 comedy-mystery One for the Money.

One for the Money

According to Bill Gibron of, "Fans of the former Grey's Anatomy star needn't worry -- Katherine Heigl's self-guided descent into career irrelevance continues unabated." Roger Moore of the Winston-Salem Journal accused Heigl of engaging in a fictitious reality TV show called "Smart Women, Stupid Choices." Both of these critics appeared more interested in attacking Heigl instead of critiquing the movie.

Why such vitriol? According to Christian Toto on the Big Hollywood website, Heigl committed the alleged cardinal sin of "trash[ing] the movie that started her big screen career, Knocked Up, and caused a ruckus on the set of her ABC hit series by pulling herself out of the Emmy competition because she didn’t think she was given award-winning material." Basically, Toto accused Heigl of having a "big mouth."

One thing that really seemed to get the critics steamed was the number of females involved in One for the Money. Heigl not only starred, but she put up her own money to gain the film rights to the bounty hunter character of Stephanie Plum created by Janet Evanovich. As lead actress and executive producer, Heigl saw to it that the director was Julie Anne Robinson and the screenwriters were Liz Brixius, Karen Ray, and Stacy Sherman. Clearly, some critics cannot stand the idea of gals making their own movies.

One for the Money Stills
Click the image to view movie stills

Stephanie Plum is the female bounty hunter created by Janet Evanovich in a series of 18 comedy mystery novels. Unlike other female bounty hunter characters, Plum is not a martial arts type nor is she especially efficient. Plum is actually incompetent -- so much so that she needs the help of a number of supporting characters, many of whom are strong males. Needless to say, Plum is hardly what you would call a feminist heroine.

One for the Money is a comedy-mystery flick about a recently divorced woman who has lost her job selling women's underwear at a department store. Desperate for employment, she tries her hand in the bounty hunter racket working for one of her cousins. With the help of some strong male characters, she is able to become slightly more proficient in her new profession while getting her man.

One for the Money is the best movie of 2012 thus far, although that may well be because of the almost uniformly awful films that have been released lately. This is a light, enjoyable show that was well-produced, directed, and generally well-acted. The cinematography is well above average. In short, despite whatever deficiencies Heigl may have in her personal life, One for the Money is a mystery flick that you will not want to miss.


darkstar2380 - Mar. 8, 2012 at 9:43:58am

For those keeping score, It's far more likely that this film was shit, like pretty much every critic in the country suggested, than it was that they were all frothing at the mouth to in a vain attempt wreck the career of an actress whose career was already wrecked. Charles, you can like a bad movie - hell, you can give us a massive list of reasons you liked it - but throwing other reviews in our face and saying "These guys are wrong because they're mean and they don't like Katherine Heigle" actually weakens your case.

Review Score

Parents Strongly Cautioned

A PG-13 rating is a sterner warning by the Rating Board to parents to determine whether their children under age 13 should view the motion picture, as some material might not be suited for them. A PG-13 motion picture may go beyond the PG rating in theme, violence, nudity, sensuality, language, adult activities or other elements, but does not reach the restricted R category. The theme of the motion picture by itself will not result in a rating greater than PG-13, although depictions of activities related to a mature theme may result in a restricted rating for the motion picture. Any drug use will initially require at least a PG-13 rating. More than brief nudity will require at least a PG-13 rating, but such nudity in a PG-13 rated motion picture generally will not be sexually oriented. There may be depictions of violence in a PG-13 movie, but generally not both realistic and extreme or persistent violence. A motion picture's single use of one of the harsher sexually-derived words, though only as an expletive, initially requires at least a PG-13 rating. More than one such expletive requires an R rating, as must even one of those words used in a sexual context. The Rating Board nevertheless may rate such a motion picture PG-13 if, based on a special vote by a two-thirds majority, the Raters feel that most American parents would believe that a PG-13 rating is appropriate because of the context or manner in which the words are used or because the use of those words in the motion picture is inconspicuous.

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