CHASING PAPI Send This Review to a Friend
Don't get caught. "Chasing Papi" is a film to run from, a Latin-flavored romantic comedy that doesn't work either as romance or as comedy. The start looks clever, as an animated sequence with the credits shows how boys are coddled from childhood to manhood, at which point they are idolized by women looking for the perfect guy. Inventiveness ends there.
The aim in this film directorial debut by Linda Mendoza is obviously to appeal to Hispanic audiences, but the screenplay by Laura Angélica Simón and Steven Antin and Alison Balian and Elizabeth Sarnoff from a story by Simón and Antin is oppressively dopey.
Ad executive Tomas, played by handsome Eduardo Verastegui, is too good to be true for each of the three women he romances with smooth talking and the same fancy underwear gifts. Each woman thinks she's his one and only. They are curvy Cici (Sofia Vergara) in Miami, mama-dominated heiress Patricia (Jaci Velasquez) in New York and poetry-loving lawyer Lorena (Roselyn Sanchez) in Chicago.
How long can Tomas maintain the juggling? The screenplay manages to bring the three women into his Los Angeles residence at the same time, thereby exposing Tomas for the deceiver that he is. They vow never to see him again, which we know won't happen because each is still smitten and thinks she has an advantage over her competitors. The plot then goes into overdrive, including an intrusion into a beauty contest, invasion of a dance event that gives the three woman a chance to shake their charms to a Latin beat and an FBI operation trailing the women, who are innocent targets in the tracking down of criminals.
If that isn't enough plot for you, Tomas begins making eyes at the woman FBI agent. Underscoring all is pulsating Latin music that rarely lets up. A Fox 2000 Pictures release.