Thursday, November 28, 2013

Identity Theft

Identity Theft 
 There is something gravely wrong with this movie. The movie feels incomplete and uneven. There are some good things in the story, but all the good stuff is buried in unfunny and patchy editing. The writing smacks of rewrites, retooling and studio notes. Melissa McCarthy isn't to blame for the film. It might be the direction and writing that gives me that empty and unfunny feeling.
Sandy Patterson (Bateman) is a normal by-the-books guy with a normal family and new job. He accidentally gives out his credit card information to Diana (McCarthy). Diana goes on a spending spree and even gets Sandy in trouble with the law. In order to clear his name, he goes to Florida to capture Diana. However, two factions want to kill or take Diana in. So, it becomes a road movie.
The premise is downright stupid and goes out of its way to prove to us that's it is legit. Why would the police and Sandy's boss approve of this scheme to capture the forger? It's because the script tells them to.
It is a road movie attempting to be in the same genre as Tommy Boy and Trains Planes and Automobiles. It has failed mainly due to the unfunny and aimless bits. Tommy Boy and Trains had heart and a clear through-line plot.
I will give the movie credit for keeping its Rated R despite it being a rather weak R rating. It felt like the producers and directors didn't know if they wanted a R or PG-13 rating.
The movie also feels underwritten with the actors making up stuff. It works for people like Seth Rogen and his crew. Then, there is the final act that completely falls apart and we get a sudden ending. The ending doesn't exactly tie up loose ends as just pinches them off. And, you're left with that empty feeling like after eating a bunch of potato chips.
There is one really cool thing about the movie. The two main characters are being pursued by the Terminator. Yes, Robert Patrick is actually one of the people chasing them from state to state trying to capture them...just like in T2. I'm guessing casting Patrick was on purpose. He's great at tracking people down. I wonder why?
So, how about the two main cast members?
Jason Bateman : He's playing the same character he's played since Arrested Development. He's playing Michael Bluth again. That's fine because he's playing the straight man, but it is a little boring.
Melissa McCarthy : On the other hand, Melissa is putting everything into her role and maybe too much. There is one scene that is very touching and McCarthy is giving it all. It is a straight scene and you almost feel sorry for her character. The scene gives you a clear motivation into why she is a con artist. However, there are times when McCarthy should have toned it down a bit. Even Chris Farley had some low-key moments in Tommy Boy.
The poorly constructed premise and weak script will keep most people away. For the most part McCarthy is good, if a little over the top. I can't recommend this movie to anyone.
Grade: D+
Multi-pass:  Wait a second...Is she a 5th element? 

No comments:

Blog Information Profile for Semaj47