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DUPLEX

Alex (Ben Stiller) and Nancy (Drew Barrymore) buy their dream home in Brooklyn, and itís perfect except for its one elderly tenant, an ancient Irish woman who lives in the rent-controlled apartment upstairs. She begins to sabotage their lives the way only sweet old ladies can ó by listening to the TV way too loud in the middle of the night and having Alex run mind-numbing errands with her (she counts out how many grapes she wants in the supermarket). So Alex and Nancy decide she must die.

Which is where the comedy begins, sort of. Playing pretty much the same character as in Meet the Parents, Ben Stiller suffers all manner of bodily injury while Barrymore acts conniving in as adorable a way as possible. Director Danny DeVito can do dark comedy well, and here he often hits the mark. But gags you can see coming a mile away arenít going to paper over an implausible plot. And even in the real-estate hell that is Boston, hiring a hit man to off your tenant seems a bit much. (88 minutes)


Issue Date: September 26 - October 2, 2003
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