Publicity Stills of "Fun with Dick & Jane"
(Courtesy from Columbia TriStar)

Genre: Comedy/Adventure
Director: Dean Parisot
Cast: Jim Carrey, Tea Leoni, Richard Jenkins, Alex Baldwin, John Michael Higgins, Angie Harmon, Aaron Michael Drozin, Gloria Garayua, Michelle Arthur
RunTime: 1 hr 30 mins
Released By: Columbia TriStar
Rating: PG (Some Coarse Language)

Opening Day: 2 Feb 2006


In Columbia Pictures’ larcenous romantic comedy Fun with Dick and Jane, Dick (Jim Carrey) and Jane (Tea Leoni) are in love and living the American dream – until one day it becomes an American nightmare.

When the company Dick works for becomes involved in an Enron-like scandal and he is confronted with the prospect of losing everything. After playing by the rules and getting burned, Dick has an idea: If stealing was good enough for his boss, then it’s good enough for him. Using his newfound skills, he and Jane decide to exact hilarious revenge and teach big business a lesson.

Movie Review:

When you mentioned the name “Jim Carrey” to anyone, he or she will instantly tell you “He’s the guy who is ‘The Mask’ or “Isn’t he Ace Ventura?” Rubbery face Jim Carrey has inculcates such deep impression as a comedian that it’s almost an impossible task to shake that off. And yes after stints in various dramas such as the critically acclaimed “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and the box-office flop “The Majestic”, the funny genes inside him is ready to resurrect or is it?

In “Fun with Dick & Jane”, Carrey pairs up with Tea Leoni aka Mrs David Duchovny as the modern-day Bonnie and Clyde after losing his well-paid job. As what producer Brian Grazer puts it, the story is set in the context of an Enron –like disaster. William Baldwin reprises his countless “been there done that” (see “Along Came Polly” and “The Aviator”) boss role as McCallister, Carrey’s corruptive head.

On the bright side, “Fun with Dick & Jane” is meant to re-educate the average mindset of today’s people. The normal trend is of course to get a well-paid job, work so hard at it (for the promised promotions and bonuses), upgrade your living standards and maximize your spending expenditures. However, not knowing that the winners will always be the ones that are on top of the food chain. Despite this well intention from the producers, the audience might find it a tad too hard to digest, this after all is a Jim Carrey’s headed comedy.

The laughter never actually kicked in until the movie clocked past the 30 minutes mark where our Dick and Jane embark on hilarious robbery sprees. One standout sequence has them impersonating Sonny and Cher. Unfortunately, most of the jokes in “FWDJ” fall flat (unless you think Carrey singing to the tune of R Kelly's I believe I can fly is funny) and worse still extracted less laughter than an average episode of “America’s Funniest Home Video”. No mere a chuckle is induced. Scripted by Judd Apatow (the man behind last year’s highly successful and rib-tickling “40 year old virgin”), “FWDJ” is such a pale comparison to the latter that you might as well assume Apatow to be secretly smuggling away the funny bits to his own movie instead.

Apparently, no antidotes on earth can save a bland script let alone the combination power of Carrey, Leoni, Baldwin and the rest of the supporting cast. Without the insane characteristics of “The Mask” or the bizarre setup of “Bruce Almighty”, Jim Carrey is basically being stripped off his entire jewels (pardon the pun). The one-time stand-up comedian is left to carry on his soul-less performance scene after scene. It’s a pity that “FWDJ” director Dean Parisot did gave us the wonderful “Galaxy Quest” back in 1999.

Although equipped with a strong cast and crew, “FWDJ” in a way tread on too carefully, sticking itself to a relatively safe path. Heck! The producers are laughing themselves to the bank. We as the cinemagoers are crying in our seats. It certainly helped us realized one thing from the underlying message in the movie once the credits roll.

Movie Rating:

(“Fun with Dick & Jane” is akin to flying with budget airlines. End of the day, you reached your destination but remember there are no frills attached)

Review by Linus Tee

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