Connie & Carla
 Nia Vardalos, Toni Collette, David Duchovny
Director: Michael Lembeck
Fax: 2004, comedy

Drag queens and mobsters go together.  So do women playing men playing women and mobsters.  Thus it is then that Connie & Carla doesn't cut new ground. "
Some Like It Hot," and "Victor/Victoria," have already laid claim to the formula.


But, in the hands of My Big Fat Greek Wedding's Nia Vardalos what is old is new again.

Vardalos and Collette play Connie and Carla, two struggling Chicago dinner theater performers who accidentally witness a mafia hit.

Not wanting to get rubbed out by the mob they hit the road, running for their lives. 

Assuming the killers will never look for them in a place devoid of culture, the pair head to Los Angeles, where they assume new identities and find their middling talent at song and dance perfectly suited to new careers--as drag queens. 

Much to their surprise, they inadvertently become the toast of the cabaret circuit. 

As their ruse becomes increasingly difficult to maintain, they discover that it is indeed lonely at the top, especially after Connie meets Jeff (Duchovny), a guy she'd really like to be a real girl with. 

With the mafia zeroing in and the line separating their onstage/offstage personas blurring beyond the point of recognition, Connie and Carla soon discover the power of not compromising to pursue your dreams, fighting the good fight, and never, never underestimating the transformative power of cosmetics.

Connie & Carla was of course written for a straight audience, but in the hands of Vardalos it doesn't sink to a nasty parody of the gay parody of straight women. 

The chemistry was there from the start for Vardalos and Collette, whose characters are meant to be lifelong friends who have been singing together since childhood.

"She came in, we met each other, we hugged," said Vardalos. "We went to the piano, we started singing, and we couldn't believe it, how well our voices blended."

Vardealos was nominated for an Oscar for My Big Fat Greek Wedding in which she also starred. A keen observer of people she pretty well has every character pegged and well defined.

Director Michael Lembeck (The Santa Clause 2) brings to the table an impeccable sense of timing...the key to good comedy.