Chasing Papi (2003)

I’m going to alienate my readers and say “Chasing Papi” is like an episode of “Three’s Company” (don’t know it? look it up), dumb, moronic, far-fetched but entertaining with a bit of an edge. “Chasing Papi” in its idiocy is entertaining dumb fluff that leaves you with nothing but noticing you’ve killed some time before doing what you really want. Yes, I expected to despise this film, but life is full of surprises, and while this wasn’t one of the masterpieces of 2003, this wasn’t awful either. I quite enjoyed it. Sure, you may be saying I found it entertaining simply because of the three mind-blowingly hot lead actresses and in some cases you’re assumption is on the money, but within its idiocy and paper thin cliché plotline, it’s never boring.

Within the hopelessly outlandish situations, there’s a bright sunny enthusiasm to the story that will keep you interested as it did me. Each of the numbskull females have their own persona and take it well. The chemistry is believable and entertaining in this quasi-female empowerment film appropriate for this post-feminist era. As would be expected the only men in the film are dumb, conniving, evil, and two-faced while the women are smart, sophisticated and sly. Each of the female leads bear their own individual personalities and they clash with fun results and they throw rapid fire trite one-liners at one another. Roselyn Sanchez, an incredibly beautiful woman and relatively successful actress is the brainy woman who is successful at work and self-conscious about her beauty.

Hard to believe, sure and I didn’t buy her self-conscious act for a second, because — look at her, she’s a doll, then there’s Cici, the shallow waitress who dreams of being a dancer played by the voluptuous Sofia Vergara, model and Spanish television star who tries her best to act with what little she’s given, not an actress but fun to look at, then there’s my favorite Patricia played by the adorable Jaci Velasquez, a spoiled rich girl who carries her toy dog around with her everywhere and whines about basically everything, and she’s entertaining to watch with the other girls. Soon the plot extends into a citywide chase and enter Victor and Rodgrido played by Freddy Rodriguez and DL Hughley.

Within the buffoonery, there’s some enjoyable scenes including the beauty competition, and the far-fetched dance on the stage. This may not win an Oscar, it may win a razzie, and it has an expected obligatory happy ending, but it’s a lot like a marshmallow: fluffy, empty, but satisfying. Leave your IQ at home for this folks because this is a relatively brainless piece of filmmaking. With a paper thin plot, this will make you wonder why you spent so much time on something not even worth glancing at. Ridiculous, this film poses all the predictable plot elements including split screens, trite predictable dialogue, and far-fetched situations that will surely insult your intelligence considering this has none.

The three women happen to call Papi at the same time of day considering they live in separate cities and most likely in different time zones, the women just happen to be completely different people without an original thought in their heads, and the three just happen to decide to visit their boyfriend on the same day, appear at the same time, and never cross paths until the appropriate moment where they reveal themselves popping out of a doorway. Three doorways. Why would someone have three bathrooms in a row in their room? Because it’s good for the plot, but nonetheless it’s a ridiculous plot element that takes its audience for suckers. Then one of the women ask why the other is wearing their lingerie, which is confusing considering none of them ever cross paths until that exact moment so it would be basically impossible.

But nonetheless, the plot continues its idiocy with the women being drawn into a large plot of drugs and thugs as DL Hughley and Freddy Rodriguez are basically wasted as two thugs who chase the girls around the city. They’re given little to do except fight one another; they have zero character depth, and little range in the comedy department. The plot elements continue as one of the girls are accidentally pulled into a beauty pageant which is odd considering no one ever asks the girl posing as a contestant for identification, no one notices their lack of an entourage, and the girls are forced to spend the night in a room where they dream of different ridiculous scenarios with their papi, three truly ridiculous and unbearable sequences that will induce plenty of eye rolls in the audience.

Then there’s the scene where the three girls pose as dancers dancing on stage at a festival where the three engage in a dance number as the crowd cheers on ad nauseum. As is always provided, there’s a happy ending. The three girls end up with comfy situations and lives as they become friends, and we feel like we’ve lost an hour and a half we’re never going to get back again. Yes, I like it for the wrong reasons, and while this is basically dumb, cheesy, one-dimensional, and hokey, this is also an entertaining fluffy popcorn comedy with plenty of eye candy for the guys and gals.