Spice World

on January 23, 1998 by Christine James
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   "Spice World" just goes to show that Spice is meant as a light seasoning, not a main course. This comic look at the hectic world of pop phenomenon The Spice Girls (Victoria Adams, Melanie Brown, Emma Bunton, Melanie Chisholm and Geri Halliwell) gets slogged down in too many silly, uninteresting sub-plots that go nowhere. Visually exuberant, the film will please fans who want to get an eyeful of the singer's outrageous fashions; lots of excuses for multiple costume changes are contrived, including a photo session in which the girls dress up as '70s pop culture icons and as each other. A lot of attention has gone into aesthetics (including a romper-room of a double-decker Spice tour bus), but not a lot of energy seems to have been expended on the script. Speaking of energy, though the Spice Girls pack it in pounds, it comes off to audiences as loud, obnoxious, false and wearing. There are a few fun cameos, like "The Rocky Horror Picture Show's" Richard O'Brien as a sneaky photographer, "Absolutely Fabulous'" Jennifer Saunders as a snobby partygoer and Bob Geldof as Mel B.'s unwilling fashion victim, but many of the celebs are wasted in unimaginative roles thrown in just to up the star wattage. Even the musical numbers, which ought to have been the strong points of the film, are rather dull and seem awkwardly and obligatorily slotted in. Striving for the comic sensibility of the Beatles' "A Hard Day's Night," the Spice Girls instead achieve a below-average episode of "The Monkees." Starring The Spice Girls, Richard E. Grant, Alan Cumming, George Wendt, Mark McKinney, Richard O'Brien and Roger Moore. Directed by Bob Spiers. Written by Kim Fuller. Produced by Uri Fruchtmann and Barnaby Thompson. A Columbia release. Comedy. Rated PG for some vulgarity, brief nudity and language. Running time: 91 min
Tags: Starring The Spice Girls, Richard E. Grant, Alan Cumming, George Wendt, Mark McKinney, Richard O'Brien and Roger Moore. Directed by Bob Spiers. Written by Kim Fuller, Produced by Uri Fruchtmann, Barnaby Thompson, Columbia, Comedy
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