Dumb and Dumber (1994)

Rating: 15
Length: 1h 47
Release: 7.4.1995
Dir: Peter Farrelly
About: Two good-hearted but incredibly stupid friends stumble upon a briefcase. Unknown to them, it contains money that is intended for abductors with connections to the mob.

The Good

  • Who’d have thought Jeff Daniels could do this sort of humour?! It’s a really different look for him and he certainly looks like he’s having fun.
  • There are some funny parts. However, when you’re throwing it as thick and fast as this film does, it’s not surprising that some of it works.
  • When it lampoons other films, it really makes it work. Both the Pretty Woman montage and the Silence of the Lambs quote are both well done.
  • I do actually quite like the resolution of the film including the FBI and the death fake out. Not sure the final scene works for me, again it’s the level of intelligence inconsistency that makes the final gag fall flat.

The Bad

  • There’s almost a quality of Monty Python to the humour in the dialogue. “Pull over.” Says the cop to Harry, for him to reply “No, it’s a cardigan but thanks for noticing.” however, due to the characters it doesn’t work quite as well.
  • The literal toilet humour is just not my thing. I know what its trying to achieve and I also appreciate that it will have some people belly laughing. However the way in which it was done was mean spirited and the outcome was over blown.

The Ugly

  • The core issue with this film is that both of your leads are beyond stupid. You need a straight man to balance out the stupid. Daniels’ Harry does show signs of being the Tom Cruise to Carrey’s Dustin Hoffman. However, that wouldn’t work as Daniels is doing so well against type. Perhaps a third in their close group would help. I’m not sure, but either way it’s just a little too much for it to be funny.
  • The humour is a little too obvious and heavy handed at times. As I mentioned before, everything was thrown into this script. Some of it hasn’t aged well, but other bits I feel always would have felt offensive. Then there’s just the completely gross: spitting in the burger for example. It makes me gag.

Final Thoughts

I didn’t really like it the first time I saw it and it’s not aged well at all. It’s a bit painful for a comedy and I’d like to think I’ll remember to never watch it again.

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