The superstar-celebrity cameo has become a greatly degraded commodity of late. Sure, it's great to snag Steve Martin to appear in a movie. But when it becomes obvious that he's invested the same amount of energy into The Rutles 2 as he put into five minutes of Kickin' It With Byron Allen during the Cheaper By The Dozen junket, the whole celebrity-cameo concept becomes cheapened. Martin Short reunites two-thirds of the Three Amigos when he sits down with Martin in Jiminy Glick In Lalawood. But since the whole idea of setting the film at the Toronto International Film Festival seems like a flimsy pretense for securing quick, easy, and abundant superstar cameos, even the roster of guest turns becomes a crushing disappointment. Sure, Captain Ron fans will be giddy at the sight of Short once again mixing it up with Kurt Russell, but a film this slipshod needs much more star-power than it's able to muster.
One of the more inexplicable TV adaptations in recent memory, Jiminy Glick marks the big-screen debut of Martin Short's mountainous celebrity interviewer, who first appeared on Short's daytime talk show The Martin Short Show, then endured a few seasons on Comedy Central, and has now crash-landed into his own cinematic vehicle. Finally providing the world with a Jiminy Glick creation myth, the film follows Short from his native Montana to Toronto, where he interviews a reclusive enfant terrible of the art-film set and becomes wrapped up in a lurid murder mystery. Short does double duty as David Lynch in an impersonation that at first seems uncanny and appealingly perverse (after all, what other crude comedy has Lynch as a major supporting character?), but then pointless and frustrating once it becomes clear that Short has nailed Lynch's homespun all-American weirdness, yet hasn't thought of anything clever for the character to do. As anyone who's attended a press junket can attest, Short's quivering fat-suit of a protagonist represents a dead-on parody of the clueless sort who makes the phrase "entertainment journalist" seem like an oxymoron. The character can be funny on TV, but the film pushes him way out of his comfort zone, doling out interviews skimpily and padding the film with unnecessary subplots, fat jokes, hick jokes, and jokes predicated on fat hicks having disproportionately voracious libidos. "Why on earth would they make a Jiminy Glick movie?" is bound to be a pretty common gut response to Lalawood, and the flop-sweat-fueled results provide no answers.