Directed by Peyton Reed.
Written by Nicholas Stoller, Jarrad Paul and Andrew Mogel.
Starring Jim Carrey, Zooey Deschanel, Bradley Cooper and Terence
Release Year: 2008
Review Date: 12/20/08
Let's be honest--Jim Carrey hasn't made a
funny movie in a while. "Yes Man", then, is a
surprise...because it actually is funny, even if it is never
Carrey returns to pure comedy for the first
"Bruce Almighty" five years ago (I don't know what to call "Fun
with Dick and Jane")...this time around, he's Carl Allen, Life Going
Nowhere Guy. His wife left him a couple of years ago, he's in
the same deadbeat bank job he's had for five years, and he has a
cell phone only to monitor who he doesn't want to talk to, including
his best friend Peter (Bradley Cooper, making a steady living on
this character type). One day he runs into an old friend (John
Michael Higgins, once again great in short order) who gets him to go
to a self-help seminar led by a crazy guy named Terence (Terence
Stamp) that approaches life one way--you've got to say YES to every
opportunity that comes your way. Carl takes Terrence up on the
offer, and proceeds to change his life, including meeting a woman
named Allison (Zooey Deschanel) who helps him get over the hump.
Carrey is great, but what drives the movie
is a constant undercurrent of above-average humor. It comes in
all forms--good physical comedy, but never crazy "Ace Ventura"
stuff; the occasional dirty stuff, but never
Myself & Irene"; funny lines, but not a single
fall-into-the-aisle moment; a romantic angle that never takes itself
that seriously. "Yes Man" also should thank its supporting
players for keeping this thing even...Cooper is good, but the real
charm here is Rhys Darby as Carl's bank boss Norman. Darby
gets some good laughs, and has the accent thing going for him, which
works. Fionnula Flanagan plays Carl's next-door neighbor
Tillie, and she's a hoot; wow, even Deschanel didn't annoy me into
submission during this film, so that in and of itself is a victory.
The film almost seems complacent in its
7-out-of-10-ness, but that was okay with me. It's a comedy
that works, safe for the whole family, and it definitely does not
suck. Again, given the year we've had, I'll take it.
Rating: $9.50 Show
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Bellview Rating System:
"Opening Weekend": This is
the highest rating a movie can receive. Reserved for movies that
exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development,
setting...or Salma Hayek. Not necessarily in that order.
"$X.XX Show": This price
changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently,
it is the $9.50 Show. While not technically perfect, this is a
movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.
"Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca",
but you'll have a great time watching. The $9.50 Show won't win any
Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see
"Matinee": An average movie
that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.
Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about
yourself. A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave
the theater saying "That wasn't too bad...man, did you see that
Lakers game last night?"
"Rental": This rating
indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your
friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one." Mostly forgettable, you
couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to
watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the
video store was out of copies of "Ronin." If you can, see this
movie for free. This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a
"Hard Vice": This rating is
the bottom of the barrel. A movie that only six other human beings
have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen. A Shannon
Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every
one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a
movie. Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or
"Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this
movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!
(Warning: strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard