It is being pegged as Lindsay Lohan's comeback, so you can understand how some are foaming at the mouth to see the troubled star as the great Elizabeth Taylor in Lifetime's biopic Liz & Dick, premiering tonight. Well, we screened the film and we have some things to tell you.
For those who have missed all the promos, posters and photos circulating since Lohan's casting was announced, here is a quick refresh. Liz & Dick, starring LiLo as Liz Taylor and Grant Bowler as Richard Burton, chronicles the tumultuous and intoxicating relationship between Taylor and Burton, from their first meeting to Burton's death in 1984.
Before you watch it tonight, here are five things to know:
1. Lindsay Lohan Is Best When Not Speaking: This is not meant to be an out-and-out insult, although it's not exactly praise, either. Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor is sometimes fun to watch (and not hear), as you'll see glimpses of life in Lohan's big blue eyes when she's playing a sultry young silver screen goddess in the beginning of the film. But hearing Lohan's raspy voice deliver lines does nothing for her portrayal. And there are often flickers of the old Lindsay, but they come and go as quickly as you can say "Four for you, Glenn Coco!"
2. Bowler Carries the Duo: He's acting his ass off, which sometimes leads to a forced performance, but the quieter moments between Richard and Elizabeth bring out the charming side of Bowler's homage to the late Burton. Even if you're only watching Liz & Dick to see Lohan attempt a comeback, you'll be happy to see the leading man plays an entertaining drunk. You can make your own Lohan drinking joke here.
3. Liz and Dick Are Your Narrators: Not only do we get reenactments of the big moments between the couple, but young Elizabeth Taylor and young Richard Burton walk us through the film from director's chairs, as if they are being interviewed for a magazine profile. These scenes, woven throughout the film to provide background info and emotional weight, are actually where we thought Lohan did the best work. Just sitting and talking. Maybe it was the walking and talking that threw off her game.
4. You Can Play Supporting Cast Bingo: "Where have I seen that guy before?" you'll ask yourself more than once. Steve from Sex and the City! Creed from The Office! They have super small parts, but still, we always like to see random favorites from other series pop up on our screens.
5. The First 30 Minutes Will Be Your Favorite: Often with a relationship, the beginning in the most exciting and interesting, because it's all brand new. That same logic applies to Liz & Dick, because seeing the two start off as enemies who loathe each other turn into lovers who cannot keep their hands off each other on the set of Cleopatra was the highlight of the entire film. That, and seeing the '50s and '60s fashion and recreation of famous movie sets, because obviously the production department did their homework.
Liz and Dick premieres tonight on Lifetime.
Will you be watching?