Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Gigli (pronounced "zhee-lee") is a film released in 2003 which was written and directed by Martin Brest, starring Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez. Al Pacino, Christopher Walken, and Lainie Kazan also starred in the movie.
Larry Gigli (Affleck) is a lowly thug who is tasked with the kidnapping of the mentally retarded, Baywatch-obsessed younger brother of a powerful federal prosecutor, in an attempt to save his mobster boss from prison. The task proves to be difficult for Gigli, so Ricki (Lopez), a lesbian assassin, is sent to oversee him.
The movie was considered a spectacular failure, having grossed only $4 million in its opening weekend after costing $52 million to make, and earning nearly universally poor reviews. This led to its becoming a synonym for "poor quality" for a brief period in July and August 2003, especially on late-night talk shows. Although the film itself is widely seen as shockingly bad (with Lopez's "It's turkey time" sexual banter being the absolute low point), the media attention over Affleck and Lopez's engagement may have hampered the movie's reputation further. That no one could figure out how to pronounce the film's title did not help. Film critics were so fearsomely derisive that there was speculation as to whether they were competing to see who could give the nastiest review.
A common criticism of Gigli is that it too closely follows the modern era film industry practice of reusing unoriginal plots, cliché dialogue, and significant filler material.
It has been suggested (particularly by the film's stars) that Gigli is not necessarily as bad as the reviews suggest, but rather happened to become a "lightning rod" film for public scorn, of a type that appears once every few years. Previous examples of films that became pariahs in the film industry may be found in the list of movies that have been considered among the worst ever.
The film received six Razzies in the 2003 Golden Raspberry Awards—Worst Picture, Worst Actor, Worst Actress, Worst Director, Worst Screenplay and Worst Screen Couple. Users of the Internet Movie Database have voted the film a prominent position on the site's list of the "100 worst films ever made".
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