"Fun with Dick and Jane" is fun for the whole family

Jan. 3, 2006, midnight | By Adam Yalowitz | 18 years, 1 month ago

Jim Carrey delivers laughs but not much more in latest Hollywood remake

Holiday moviegoers can expect exactly what "Fun with Dick and Jane," advertises, lots of laughs and not much more. The film continues a recent Hollywood trend of recycling old ideas. But unlike most remakes released in the past few years, the new flick, directed by Dean Parisot, successfully transforms the original 1977 movie starring George Segal and Jane Fonda by updating the plot to include recent corporate scandals.

In the film, Jim Carrey and Téa Leoni play a couple, Dick and Jane Harper, who turn to robbery in order to pay their bills. Dick works for an Enron-styled company, Globadyne, which goes bankrupt because of a corporate accounting scandal that leaves Globadyne's top executives rich and everyone else poor. He is humiliated when, without warning, he is put on television to announce the company's failure. After struggling financially for several months, Dick and Jane begin a life of crime.

The two start off with a string of failed burglaries including a trip to the local convenience store where Dick only steals a Slurpee and a failed mugging attempt of what turns out to be their close friend. But Dick and Jane soon pick up the pace and after robbing restaurants, retail chains and some neighbors, they are able to live it up with big-screen TVs, a new pool and more.

"Fun with Dick and Jane" mocks recent corporate executives who have been charged with defrauding their companies for personal gain with the portrayal of Globadyne's top executive (Alec Baldwin), a greasy crook who rips off his employees and reaps the benefits. After Dick is indicted by federal prosecutors as part of their investigation into Globadyne's collapse, Dick confronts Baldwin with the help of another Globadyne executive Frank Bascom (Richard Jenkins).

The movie is outfitted with lots of small laughs. At one point, Dick gets a job at KostMart — a Wal-Mart spoof, but is fired after he gets in a brawl with an angry customer. In desperation, Jane becomes a cosmetics test subject who has lots of bad reactions to the sample makeup.

"Fun with Dick and Jane" is at times hurt by Carrey's extreme overacting. When Carrey is dancing in an elevator—it's funny, but it gets to be too much by the time he reaches the fiftieth floor. It is definitely not one of Carrey's greatest roles, but its simplicity and funny antics make "Fun with Dick and Jane" better than many recent comedies.

"Fun with Dick and Jane" (90 minutes) is rated PG-13 for brief language, some sexual humor and occasional humorous drug references.

Adam Yalowitz. Adam Yalowitz is just silly. You may find him asking you how much sleep you got last night and then smirking when you say "five hours," because he's always slept less, no matter what. When he does sleep, he dreams of Barack Obama, Tastee Diner … More »

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