Who’s That Girl is one of those movies that was marketed intensively during its release, most due to the theme music video by the movie’s star Madonna. But this is one of those movies that I never saw on TV and also never got a world wide release on DVD. But curious as I was and in desperate need for some nostalgic throwback to the 80s I watched it just last night and caught myself humming already during the animated opening titles with the Madonna song “Commotion”.
In Who’s That Girl Madonna is a classic Manic Pixie Dream Girl, her character Nikky is an ex-convict who went to jail for a crime she didn’t commit. On the day of her release one of New York’s wealthiest men sends his son-in-law-to-be Louden (Griffin Dunne), who he thinks little of, to make sure she gets on the bus to Philadelphia. Nikky however has other plans and will turn Louden’s world upside down.
Despite a story involving a wrongly convicted girl trying to clear her name and some gangsters Who’s That Girl is actually a comedy in which Madonna’s character is larger than life and seems to have every situation under control. Whether its jumping from rooftop to rooftop, getting chased by the police in a car, stealing stores empty or being under police fire in the house of an arms dealer while dressed in weird outfits and talking with a scrawny voice in thick New York accent. Her character is one dimensional and only serves to have the lawyer character of Louden leave his comfort zone and make him an accessory to all the illegal things she does.
Who’s That Girl is one of those movies that isn’t very good, but at the same time isn’t hard to watch. Jokes fall flat and the movie’s characters are so far away from real life people that you never get invested in these people. I was annoyed by the whole plot with the two gangsters chasing Madonna’s character around New York; at one point the end up in the water after falling from a parking garage in their limousine. A couple of scenes later we see the limo covered in sea weeds driving again. Then these guys show up at the bachelorette party of Louden’s Fiancé at which point one of the gangsters smiles only to spit out two fishes that have been in his mouth all this time apparently. This is something that happens in a cartoon and since the opening credits are a cartoon I guess this movie is supposed to be a real-life cartoon, with Nikky being a flesh and blood Bugs Bunny character.
The movie is filled with those unrealistic settings. Another wealthy man has a complete rainforest reconstructed on the top of one of New York’s building including monks, zebra’s and big cats. The gangsters have kidnapped all of the bridesmaids and nobody seems to even care.
As hard as it is to really like this movie, it’s also really hard to actually hate it. Madonna does has a certain charm, even though she acts like sh*t and that goes for the movie as well.