I’ve never seen “The Devil Wears Prada”. My wife enjoyed it, but I figured that my having a penis would be a severe detriment to doing the same. Not to sound like a Neanderthal; hell, I cried like a newborn all four times I saw “Beaches” in the theater. I just know what I like, and Meryl Streep talking about high fashion for two hours isn’t on the list, no matter how many shots of Anne Hathaway’s rack are involved. Well, sometimes life runs in direct conflict with what you like, so when I woke up too late to see “Appaloosa” at my desired time this weekend, I decided to check out “How To Lose Friends And Alienate People”. Yes, I had heard that it was a lot like “Prada”. Yes, I knew it contained very little gunplay, and even less Viggo Mortensen, all very good reasons to not give this film a day in court. But damn it I had a plan, and my OCD demanded I see a movie in the two o’clock hour. Fake “Prada” it was. “Influence” is based on the memoir of British writer Toby Young, who came to America in 1995 to work for “Vanity Fair” and hated every second of his almost two-year stint. After seeing this film, let’s just say I know how he feels. While the film doesn’t last six months it sure feels like it, with every “outrageous” scene playing more ridiculously than the last…and let’s discuss the outrageous quotient here for a minute. The advertising campaign for this movie makes it look like a knee-slapping romp, full of food spitting and dogs leaping out of windows. Imagine my surprise when I was bait-and-switched into sitting through a romantic comedy of the most tedious order. Oh, you mean the obnoxious guy actually works with the girl he insulted his first night in town? Oh, and the girl hates him at first, but then sees through all of his bluster to see he isn’t so bad after all? That’s great, glad to hear it; hey, could you do me a favor and stab me? No, not in the heart…go for the femoral artery. I want to suffer as much as possible for deciding to cough up $14.00 for this celluloid throat punch. I’m a Simon Pegg guy, and he does what he can here, making the lead character effortlessly obnoxious. Kirsten Dunst is obnoxious as well, but not effortlessly so. In fact, I’m not sure if “effortful” is a word, but if it isn’t I’m coining it just to describe how hard Kirsten Dunst works at being obnoxious in this film. Mind you, her character isn’t supposed to be obnoxious, but Kirsten Dunst’s heroic effort makes her so. She is an Actress with a capital “A”, always making acting look incredibly difficult, bulldozing her way through a scene as quickly as possible, knowing that as soon as the director yells “cut” there are drinks to be guzzled and texts to send. Don’t agree with me? See the movie and enjoy the scene where she gets “drunk”; this girl has been to rehab, she has years of experience to draw from, yet her performance looks like she just watched twenty minutes of “Arthur“ and said “let’s do this”. Brutal. Megan Fox does a nice job playing Jessica Alba…well, not Jessica Alba per se, but certainly a Jessica Alba type. Jeff Bridges and Julianne Moore get to wear wigs, and Thandie Newton plays herself flirting with someone at a party, making me realize how sexy she is and I never noticed. According to the box office tally this week I’m the only person to have seen this movie, so a review seems a little ridiculous; I’m sure by the time this is published the movie will be out of theaters. However, if my ranting saves even one traveler from ordering this on in-room pay-per-view, keeps just one channel-flipper from wasting 109 minutes of their life…well, then I will not have typed in vain.