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Monday, February 18, 2013

3 Minute Movie Review: Identity Thief.


I saw the trailer for Identity Thief a few weeks ago. I thought it looked okay enough to take a shot. Jason Bateman has always struck me as someone who gives you your moneys worth. I didn't know of Melissa McCarthy but she seemed funny and looked to have pretty good comedic timing. She does have the Phylis Diller quality to her and she can do a pretty decent Lucy impression.


For Identity Thief, both of these theories held. Bateman was very good, and McCarthy is what I thought she would be. I took in a few scenes of Mike and Molly, her TV sitcom that has gotten her attention and she looked like she was the real deal. She is. Sort of. 
You can love her for about 30 minutes, but after about an hour, you are tired of her act. That isn't so much a reflection of her,  but what they make her do. Or don't do.
It also had an interesting yet likely predictable premise. Which they stuck to without much variation. It didn't look like they wanted to do much of anything with this movie other than play it safe enough to make big box office. Which they are. Mission accomplished.
However, the plot was predictable, the gags weak and repetitive, the direction plodding and contrived. The comedy was very good at times,  over cliched a lot. The car chase scenes were foolish and moronic as were many of the secondary plots they devised to try and break up the Bateman/McCarthy overuse in the film. It didn't work. 
As with any movie, you have to suspend reality to accept many of the plot devices. However, in this movie you could not. The fact that someone completely stole your identity, totally ruined your life, showed no remorse and continued to antagonize and trick you as you hauled her ass across the country, only to have you feel sympathy for her at one point is moronic and not even remotely believable.
McCarthy is obviously talented...but..when you make her play the role one way for 2 hours, that gets very tired and uninteresting after about an hour. The jokes were okay, but weak at times. The rest of the movie had no other redeeming features. 
My opinion, this movie is strictly a pandering cash grab by the studio. They know you will like the trailer and go see it. Worked on me. The reviews have been bad, and that isn't surprising.

 http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130206/REVIEWS/130209992

I rate it 2 stars out of 5, and that is being generous. It isn't the worst movie I have seen lately, but it isn't very good either. Take out Bateman and or McCarthy and put in lesser talents and it easily could hit 1 star,  which is a total pass.
I say that you should rent it if you get a chance and not pay full price and then see if you want to carry on after 45 minutes. If I was at home with that option, I would have ditched it. 
Bateman will go on to do many other great things. So will McCarthy, but in spite of their efforts, they were both wasted in this half-assed script. 

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