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STUDIO: Warner Bros.
RUNNING TIME: 104 minutes
Digital copy of the film
Downtime on the Set
Jim Carrey: Extreme Yes Man
Future Sounds: Muchausen By Proxy
Five Munchausen By Proxy music videos
Where did you ever get in life by saying “No?”
Jim Carrey, Zooey Deschanel, Bradley Cooper, John Michael Higgins, Rhys Darby, Fionula Flannigan, Sasha Alexander, Terence Stamp
Carl Allen (Carrey) is a typical loser who is content to meander through life secure in his own misery. He hates his job, he’s a virtual shut in since his wife dumped him, and he ignores his friends. When he decides to attend a session given by motivational speaker, Terrence Bundley (Stamp), he feels compelled to take Bundley’s advice of saying “Yes” to life’s opportunities to the extreme. This leads him to accepting any and every opportunity that presents itself, no matter how asinine, spurring adventures he scarcely could have imagined, including meeting a free spirit named Allison (Deschanel).
“Hmm…A Lowdown Dirty Shame, Scary Movies ! & 2, Don’t Be A Menace, White Chicks, Little Man…goddamn these suck…”
I honestly haven’t been studying Jim Carrey much in the last five years or so, and haven’t seen a film of his in a theatre since Liar, Liar. I kind of got worn out on the Jim Carrey shtick where seemingly every film that wasn’t The Truman Show or Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind was the aforementioned Liar, Liar, Bruce Almighty, Me, Myself and Irene, or Fun With Dick and Jane. Carrey gets credit for trying new things, some that worked and some that didn’t, but he seemingly would always go back to his bread and butter films, portraying likeable everymen caught up in unusual situations and bringing his own style of manic antics to those characters. He does so yet again with Yes Man. But I don’t find myself minding as much as I thought I would.
The basic premise is that Carrey’s Carl Allen is a self-pitying loser, afraid to drag his life out of the rut into which it’s sunk. A chance meeting with an old friend has Carl going to a “Yes Man” seminar, hosted by a hamming Terence Stamp as Terrence Bundley. From there, Carl resolves to say “Yes” to everything in life, no matter how absurd. This leads him to becoming a homeless man’s personal cabby and financier, learning Korean, how to play a guitar, jumping off of a bridge, saving a potential suicide jumper, saying yes to every potential small business loan that comes by his desk at work, and attending his boss’ Harry Potter role playing party.
However, the biggest change that occurs in his life is meeting Allison, a free spirit who sings in an obscure performance art rock band, likes to teach a running / photography class and drive really fast on her little scooter. Together they have adventures like stealing into the Hollywood Bowl on a date and flying to Lincoln, Nebraska because it’s the first flight out of the airport. For a while, things are looking up for Carl, but eventually his pact to say yes to everything eventually backfires, as you suspect it would, and he not only gets suspected of being a terrorist (it’s a plot point that comes out of nowhere), but loses Allison when she realizes he did everything, including agreeing to move in with her because he had to. Carl then has to learn that he has to pick and choose wisely what he agrees to and has to work to fix some of the screw ups his amenability has caused.
“You and me, supervillain team up, what do you say, Nygma?”
Carrey does do a fair bit of mugging and histrionics, but they’re dialed back here a bit more than some of his more manic films and although the story’s a close cousin to Liar, Liar, it’s still pretty entertaining, but definitely familiar. The love story is probably the most endearing part of the film and Deschanel is also likable. Bradley Cooper is slumming as Carl’s best friend. I wouldn’t buy this disc, but it’d make a good Friday night rental for you and the squeeze.
Zod discovered the hard way there are places even worse then the Phantom Zone…
The movie looks good and sound is suitable in Englkish, French and Spanish Dolby 5.1 with corresponding subtitles. There’s a four- minute behind-the-scenes featurette, Down Time on the Set where Carrey gives a quickie interview about how the cast and crew goofs off between takes. Another featurette, Jim Carrey: Extreme Yes Man is a 12-minute piece about Carrey doing much of the physical stunt work including actually bungee jumping int the movie. Future Sounds: Munchausen By Proxy is a five-minute faux doco on Allison’s music group with the actors in character. There are also five music videos of the band performing from outtakes of the movie. A five-minute gag reel and a digital copy of the film on Disc 2 tops off things.