reviewed by Lynn Barker
What kicks serious ass, looks cute in a bikini, chases mad bombers
and snorts when she laughs? It's Sandra Bullock in MISS CONGENIALITY!
Sandra says one crazy scene in front of the Alamo where she wears
a "Bavarian tutu" was enough to end her career! (Check out Sandra
in her Bavarian duds on the official website).
FBI agent GRACIE HART (Sandra Bullock) has been kickin' butt
and takin' names since grade school. She takes her job extra seriously
and is one of the guys. This is especially easy since she wears
no make-up (never heard of tweezers) and dresses like a bag lady.
After Gracie blows an FBI bust and a fellow agent is shot, her
boss McDONALD (Ernie Hudsen) puts her on desk duty. Gracie, the
brightest mind in her group of agents, can't keep from working
on the case of "The Citizen" a mad bomber who has been spreading
When The Citizen sends another threat letter, it's Gracie who
figures out that he's going to blow something (or someone) up
at the Miss United States beauty pageant in Texas. The FBI needs
an undercover "babe" quick and Gracie is the last female anyone
thinks of but, hey, she's got a bod under all those bulky unisex
clothes! Gracie, a true feminist, hates the whole idea of beauty
pageants but it's her only chance to go back on active duty.
It's miracle worker pageant consultant VICTOR MELLING (Michael
Caine) who transforms the awkward tomboy into Cinderella and studly
fellow agent ERIC MATTHEWS (Benjamin Bratt) takes real notice.
Once at the pageant, the transformed Gracie (posing as Miss New
Jersey) makes friends with the other contestants, realizes that
they aren't all brainless "Barbies", solves the case and saves
the day and her newfound friends when the bomber strikes.
MISS CONGENIALITY is a laugh riot and much of the credit goes
to Bullock who excels here in both physical slapstick comedy (a
la Lucille Ball) and charm. It's fun to see her character's transformation
from frump to femme fatale and watch her learn that she can be
brainy, physically strong and also a hottie! Ben Bratt (Julia
Robert's main squeeze) is macho yet vulnerable and Michael Caine
is hilarious as the pageant consultant who plays "fairy" godfather
to Bullock's Gracie. There is plenty of action mixed in with the
humor and budding romance. This flick is an uplifting, fun way
to spend a holiday nite at the movies. Big recommend from this
Directed by: Donald Petrie
Screenplay by: Marc Lawrence, Katie Ford, Caryn Lucas
Starring: Sandra Bullock as Gracie
Hart Benjamin Bratt as Eric Matthews
Michael Caine as Victor Melling
Candice Bergen as Kathy Morningside
William Shatner as Sam Fields
Ernie Hudsen as McDonald
Official Website: www.misscongeniality.net