Seeing Double
1 out of 5 stars
R E V I E W   B Y   R I C H   C L I N E
seeing double The British pop group S Club have been doing Monkees-type TV shows for years; I've never seen one but their music is the best of all the pre-packaged pop groups. Now they hit the big screen with this adventure comedy, cowritten by the guy who wrote Spice World (Fuller, who's the brother of S Club and Pop Idol creator Simon). But unlike Spice World, there's nothing here at all for either non-fans or grown-ups ... or people with brains. Even the 10-year-old girls at my screening seemed bored by this lackluster romp.

The plot: A mad scientist (Gant) has cloned the six perky S Clubbers and left the originals stranded in Barcelona while the clones go on stage for them in L.A. Using a little resourcefulness and a lot of luck, the originals get to L.A. and figure out what's going on. Hijinks ensue as some of them swap places with the clones to figure out what's happening ... and then all 12 of them work together to escape the baddie.

Not only is the story bone-crushingly weak, but the filmmakers never inject any lively goofiness to make it entertainingly silly. It just crawls across the screen, getting bogged down in its own belaboured nonsense, sputtering out altogether then trying to revive itself with a clumsily staged action sequence. There are only two big musical numbers (not nearly enough), the whole thing is obviously filmed in Spain (with second unit footage from L.A. edited in), and the crowd of clones at the end only vaguely resemble the celebrities they're supposed to be (except for Gates, who gamely makes fun of himself, and Gant, who looks creepily like Christopher Lee, although that joke is never used). The band members themselves are sparky and funny, even if the four girls are virtually interchangeable (OK, Hannah is the dippy Baby Spice character, while Jo is the sardonic Ginger Spice, and apparently the only one who can actually sing). The whole thing is just so ineptly made that it's hard to imagine anyone really enjoying it ... besides die-hard fans who quite obviously will watch just about anything.

cert PG themes, innuendo 2.Mar.03

dir Nigel Dick
scr Kim Fuller, Paul Alexander
with Tina Barrett, Jon Lee, Bradley McIntosh, Jo O'Meara, Hannah Spearritt, Rachel Stevens, David Gant, Joseph Adams, Christian Piaget, Gareth Gates
release UK 11.Apr.03
03/UK 1h31

Reach for the stars! The members of S Club make their bid for movie stardom...

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R E A D E R   R E V I E W S
send your review to Shadows... seeing double "It's not a serious film and if you have ever seen the TV series you will understand what it's supposed to be about. I just think that with this film reviewers are missing the point about it. And to be honest, I will say that if you're not actually an S Club fan or even a fan of the TV series the chances of you enjoying the film are pretty much non-existent." --David, UK 2.Apr.03

"Erm, I was reading the review and I thought it was kinda true but not all. Yes it did lack a lot of what I thought it would be. Even though it wasn't that funny, I thought it would be ok for the younger generation because there was certainly a lot of laughs coming from the back of my screening." --Sophie Marsden, UK 19.Apr.03

2003 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall

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