Somehow I knew this one was going to get terrible reviews the minute I saw the first trailer. Steve Carell's movies usually get lukewarm reviews at best. But it was Carell, Jim Carrey AND Steve Buscemi. There was no WAY I was not going to see this movie. I just had to make sure to keep my expectations at a somewhat moderate level.
In "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone", Wonderstone (Carell) and his partner Anton Marvelton (Buscemi) have ruled the Las Vegas strip for years with their illusions. But lately, Wonderstone's ego has gotten the better of him and puts a strain on their friendship. It doesn't help matters that a younger up and coming illusionist Steve Gray (Carrey) is beginning to steal their thunder with his guerilla street magic. Burt and Anton have one last chance to salvage their career and their friendship if Burt can get back in touch with what made him love magic in the first place.
One has to understand that when you're going to see a Carell movie there's a good chance there will be a corniness aplenty. That's what he has made his living on. And let us not forget that Carrey has too. So of course I was going in expecting to see an abundance of it here. That's exactly what I got. It didn't always hit. Mainly the parts that the trailers already gave away, but that parts that did were golden. Simple things like that little dance that Wonderstone and Marvelton did to open their show every night.
My favorite scene was the one when Burt tried to do their Vegas act on his own when it clearly had to be a two person show. And to top it all off, he was drunk. Easily the best laugh out loud moment in the whole flick. Granted, there weren't many like that, but there were still enough chuckles here and there to be had throughout "Wonderstone". Again, it really helps if you appreciate that type of humor.
There was actually a nice little message the movie was conveying too. Something that several actors and actresses need to be paying attention to. At some point, a lot of these folks have been in the game so long that they start going thru the motions. They don't put their all into their performances because they feel they can rest on their laurels. But when they do that, the fans suffer. I'm sure that message will go overlooked since so many critics panned this one.
Occasionally I will come across a movie that is widely criticized by the professional critics and I end up loving it. I wouldn't go as far as to say that "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone" falls in that category. However, it did have me laughing. There have been plenty of so-called comedies that have failed to accomplish that. It probably could have waited for a Redbox release for me, but it wasn't near as bad as folks have made it out to be.
My rating: C+