Train wreck ... Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton telemovie widely panned.
Lindsay Lohan had hoped it would be the film that would restart her troubled career, but Liz & Dick, a made-for-television drama about Elizabeth Taylor's tempestuous relationship with Richard Burton, due to screen in America this weekend, seems to be having the opposite effect.
Reviewers have declared that Lohan is "no Taylor", that her acting skills "are rudimentary" and that she is "hilariously bad" in the role.
"Poor Linds doesn't stand a chance," reported Newsday. "As seen here, her skills are rudimentary – made rustier by a long absence and a lot of other extracurricular activities." And that was one of the better reviews.
"Woeful" ... Lindsay Lohan and Grant Bowler as Liz Taylor and Richard Burton in Liz & Dick.
"Lohan is woeful as Taylor from start to finish," The Hollywood Reporter said under the headline "Half train wreck, half skit". "But, whatever you do, don't miss Liz & Dick. It's an instant classic of unintentional hilarity."
Lohan, 26, is described as "so melodramatically overwrought" that it is "impossible not to laugh" as it is "inadvertently hysterical".
Sadly, Lohan had made much of the role, saying she fought to get the part because she related to Taylor so much. "And that is aside from her love for diamonds," she told Britain's Daily Mirror last week.
Lohan's co-star, New Zealander Grant Bowler, fares better, with the New York Daily News saying he "comes closer to Burton's rough, rugged charm and rich voice - a voice born to play Shakespeare, yet too often reduced to disposable junk because the paychecks supported the life to which he and Taylor had become accustomed".
But he too, the paper noted, is let down by the script. At one point Lohan (as Taylor) asks Bowler (as Burton) to join her by the pool. "I don't need a pool," he replies. "I've got a whole ocean in you." The Daily News sarcastically responded: "Liz & Dick, in the end, feels closer to a puddle."