The Last Song, the movie Nicholas Sparks wrote just so Miley Cyrus could display her post–Hannah Montana dramatic acting chops, has been screened by critics and it appears that the mystery of why the movie's trailer featured almost no speaking parts by its star has finally been solved (along with the question of who in this Sparks movie kicks the bucket, though it wasn't hard to guess). It seems poor Miley can't act to save her (co-star's) life, but the critics are having fun describing exactly how the Disney property fails to rise to Streep-ian heights in what sounds like a completely forgettable film. (Spoiler warning: The identity of the person who dies is revealed below.)
"Displaying approximately 1½ expressions, the teenage Cyrus pouts her way through a fire, a wedding and a funeral -- not to mention intervening in an abusive relationship, digging out guilty secrets and resisting overtures from her dad, whom she's never forgiven for her parents' divorce." —Lou Lumenick [NYP]
"Her dramatic abilities largely consist of two moves — scrunching up her face and staring wistfully into the distance." [AP]
"The worst movie star since Dane Cook. Her emotional range includes happy and mad and nothing in between." [Metromix Chicago]
"Allegedly, this is the film in which Cyrus gets all, like, dramatic. If by “dramatic’’ one means pouty, sullen, and cute, then OK. But it’s not tragedy you sense behind those big brown eyes. It’s a party in the USA." [Boston Globe]
(DYING CO-STAR SPOILER ALERT ... ASSUMING THAT AFTER READING THE PRECEDING INFORMATION YOU ARE SOMEHOW STILL PLANNING ON SEEING THIS FILM.) We would be jerks if we didn't mention that almost every review we read gave Greg Kinnear props for his portrayal of the person who dies in this particular Nicholas Sparks joint — even negative reviews of the film said he was pretty good, so good for him.