Steve Martin has some amusing scenes as Kate's kooky extra-crunchy boss - those flower-print shirts suggest he's running Trader Joe's on the side.
And Greg Kinnear, getting sexier by the role, plays the owner of a smoothie shop who's worried that Kate's new store might be gentrifying the neighborhood. Here we have a slight reversal of the galling finale of "You've Got Mail," where the man puts the woman he likes out of business, but she loves him anyway. But the movie's hook is the rapport between its two stars.
They turn a classical screwball relationship upside down. Poehler is Katharine Hepburn by way of Jerry Lewis. The years they spent working together on "Saturday Night Live," where Poehler still works, have turned them into a sharply instinctive comedy duo.
a bundle of laughs
The uproariously uncouth people Poehler often plays are a natural affront to Fey's buttoned-up professionals. They're roiling ids and ridiculously physical. Poehler gradually lets a human being out of Angie long enough for the characters to seem like more than a gag. But she's at her delirious best when out of physical control.
Bundle of laughs
But in this era of Apatow and Ferrell and Rogen and Wilson, of men monopolizing movie comedy, "Baby Mama" feels absurdly momentous, and even political. Fey and Poehler aren't just taking back control of their bodies.
They're taking back control of their profession. Wesley Morris can be reached at wmorris globe.
A Bundle of Laughs by Mark Stibbe, J. John Stibbe | Waterstones
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