A Nutshell Review: The Heartbreak Kid
I'm a fan of Ben Stiller and his brand of comedy, and I rate hisinsanely good looking (heh) Derek Zoolander as one of my contemporaryfavourites, alongside his Dodgeball opposite Vince Vaughn, and his MeetThe Parents/Fockers combo. But perhaps the most memorable and highlyrated laughfest will be his starring in the Farrelly Brothers' There'sSomething About Mary, with Matt Dillon and Cameron Diaz as the ditzyblonde the two guys are trying to go after.
The Heartbreak Kid brings Stiller back to the Farrelly Brothers' fold,joining forces again to bring in the laughs in a situation thatunmarried guys my age fear. While we may be nonchalant about stayingsingle and enjoying the status to sow our wild oats, there's alwaysthis nagging thought about what would happen when we seem to have metthat special someone who could be just the very person to spend therest of our life with. Thinking about "forever", that it's a long time,make us go into weighing in the pros and the cons of giving up ourfreedom, and we just want to be darn sure (and suicidal) to be givingup our singlehood.
And for forty year old Eddie (Stiller), he shares the same sentiments,but on the advise of best buddy Mac (Rob Corddry), who himself is ahen-pecked husband, and Casanova dad Doc (Jerry Stiller, Ben's realfather), he marries Lila (Malin Akerman), the blonde akin to CameronDiaz's Mary in the earlier Farrelly-Stiller collaboration, on a whimafter six weeks of courtship. While on the surface, she's physically dabomb, and might seem all nice and dandy inside, little does Eddie knowthe nightmare is about to begin, as he discovers (say what?) they sharevery little interests, she's the archetypal dumb blonde always made funof in blonde jokes, and she's a sexual nymph who likes it very rough(ok, so some of us out there might take this as a plus point).
If there's a moral to the story, that will be to consider verycarefully, and to take your time before you commit to that matrimonialvow. You might call me old-fashioned, but I believe that once you walkdown that aisle, you'll just have to stick with the woman you marry,for better or worse, and learn to accept her faults. After all,nobody's perfect. But this is a movie, so if anyone is holding ontosuch real-world ideal notions, then you'll probably not have a goodtime, and start to frown at every Eddie antic at his horror ofdiscovery, and worse, when he starts to develop feelings for Miranda(Michelle Monaghan, last scene on the big screen playing Ethan Hunt'swife in MI:III), an equally attractive woman who probably shares moreof the same interests as Eddie, whom he met while on honeymoon.
Wait a minute, cheating on your wife during honeymoon? Yes, which iswhy the conservatives out there will leave with a bad aftertaste. Butfor the rest of us, it examines the type of dilemma for someone havingsecond thoughts (after all, these are fertile grounds for affairs). Thenarrative starts to junk the comedy and move into romance-drama gears,but lest you forget this is still a Farrelly Brothers' movie, theirtrademark sexually vulgar scenes and jokes come and surprise you whenyou least expect. Body parts (there's this scene involving bodilyfluids which you just have to see to believe the insane audacity of itall) and orifices are no longer sacred. Comedy of errors are standardfare, as are the increasing inserts of gay jokes whenever possible.However most jokes were still on Lila, and plenty of that were alreadyincluded in the trailer, so if you haven't watched it, don't.
As a comedy, The Heartbreak Kid somehow didn't live up to its promise.Sure it has its moments, but they were few and far between, and inreality, you'll probably enjoy the Eddie- Miranda romantic scenes (andthose with her family) a lot more than you would the Eddie- Lilacomedic scenes. Does it have an ending and resolution to Eddie'sdilemma of which girl to choose? Yes, but it turned out to be extremelyclunky and unfunny (try as it would want to), dragging out the last actunnecessarily to put this movie close to a two hour runtime. It's stilla comedy after all, so don't expect a very powerful and emotional closeala dramatic fare like Castaway, which it tried to ape, with a comedicslant of course.
Deinitely not one of Stiler's, or the Farrelly Brother's best work todate. Stay tuned for the cameo appearance of one prominent TV actressat the close, and stay tuned during and after the end credits. There'sa scene involving Lila, which probably isn't in very good taste,showing how she managed to get satisfied, and the other bringing youback to 1975 to confirm a certain event which was mentioned in passing.