a critiQal film review Bruce Almighty (2003)

Plot: Bruce Nolan (Carrey) isn’t having a good day. After getting passed up for a promotion at the local TV station, he gets himself fired, he gets in a fight with his girlfriend Grace (Aniston), goes for a drive to blow off steam and ends up getting in a car wreck. Convinced that God hates him, Bruce challenges God to make Himself known to him. Much to his surprise, God responds, and gives Bruce all of His powers.

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  • ...Carrey returns to comedy as if he never left, bringing with him all the zaniness viewers could hope for.

With the release of Bruce Almighty, it looks like the Jim Carrey we’ve been missing for a few years is back!

After making a name for himself as a comedic actor with such classics as Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), The Mask (1994) and Liar Liar (1997), Jimmy Boy decided to take a different tact and get a little dramatic on us (The Majestic, Man on the Moon).

While his Andy Kaufman portrayal in Man on the Moon did get him a Golden Globe®, I don’t think I’m alone in saying the old Jim Carrey was sorely missed.

Hopefully, Bruce Almighty marks the return of Jimmy Boy to his comedic roots, and he decides to stick with this format for awhile to come. But, one big question still remains: Can Jim still do comedy, or has the dramatic turn taken all the fun out of him?

The answer to that question is an emphatic Yes – he can still do comedy. He returns to comedy as if he never left, bringing with him all the wild and craziness we expect from good ol’ Jimmy. His performance is slightly reminiscent of his Liar Liar (1997) days, and improv-ing scenes still seems to be his favorite pass time. His character’s “power” trip gives Jim free reign to go nuts, and the viewer will love every minute of it.

The chemistry between Jim and his on-screen girlfriend Aniston plays out decently as well, keeping the movie flowing rather than getting hung up on that occasional sticky comedy romance movie issue. Aniston’s character so closely resembles her “Friends” (TV) character Rachel that you keep wondering where the rest of the gang is throughout the film.

Morgan Freeman takes on God, literally, as he portrays the Big Guy himself. Freeman plays the role with a calm air of benevolence about him, and lends an air of credibility to the role.

The plot of Bruce Almighty is an instant attention getter. Who out there hasn’t wanted to be God for at least a day? But while the movie does gloss over some of the negative aspects of being God, such as wars, racial violence, etc., it does touch on a subject many of you ‘God for a day’ wishers probably never even considered – prayers. It’s interesting to see how they present this and produces a great scene where Bruce tries to organize the prayers (which come straight into his head) into something more manageable.

The special affects abound in the film, as you may have guessed. With the premise that Bruce has God-like powers, the suspension of disbelief that any film aims for hinges not only on the acting, but also a great deal on the special effects in this case. And they don’t let you down. From walking on water to pulling the moon closer for a romantic interlude with the girlfriend, each scene’s effects are so flawless that they allow you to concentrate more on the plot and the acting then the effects themselves (learn from this, oh makers of Godzilla (1998) and Deep Impact (1998)).

Bruce Almighty is the perfect vehicle to reintroduce Jim to his comedic roots. It’s premise gives Jim plenty of opportunity to showcase his riotous personality, and your sides will hurt from laughing as Jim puts on his show. Morgan Freeman and Rachel, er Jennifer Aniston, are here too, but Jim really steals the show, as usual.

Bruce Almighty is the first really good non-animated comedy in years, so what are you waiting for? For Bruce’s sake go out and buy it today!

1 Comment

  1. there are very few talented actors that is as versatile as morgan freeman ‘**

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