Fredís No Clue Movie Review

"Bruce Almighty"
Directed by Tom Shadyac

If you need to laugh, Bruce Almighty is an OK film to chuckle at.  Jim Carrey is returning to form as a rubber faced comedian directed by the guy that brought us Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.  Jennifer Aniston plays his wife, and she looks good in the film.  Sheís developing into a good little movie actress and seems to be taking all different kinds of roles.  The premise concerns a local weatherman who wants to be a serious anchorman, and is fed up with Godís vision for his life.  He thinks he can do a better job.  Morgan Freeman, plays God, and endows Bruce with all of his powers.  Bruce uses them at first for his personal gain until he realizes that heís affecting the people that he loves.  Thatís right.  Itís a sappy flick.  It definitely isnít too heavy. 

One aspect of the film I was excited about was that it was set in the city of Buffalo, NY, my hometown area.  Sadly, they donít capture the real look of the city since most of it was shot on the Universal Studios backlot.  I know, Iíve taken the tour a few times.  And last time I checked, there werenít a whole lot of brownstones in Buffalo.  There are some second unit shots of Buffalo that are authentic, but they are few and far between.  They do seem to capture the essence of the people and the community spirit though.  This probably wonít bother you, if you didnít grow up in Western New York.  Iím sure itís a similar feeling for many people whose cities were recreated on the backlots of Hollywood studios.  It just leaves a kind of saccharine look to the movie, not very authentic.  I guess it really bothered me since I was very familiar with the look of the city.  It would have altered the look of the movie, had it been a little more authentic looking setting.  Maybe Hollywood could get their actors to venture outside of the soundstages and backlots when they want to set their movies in real cities.  Especially, when theyíre paying them $20 million.  Itís bad enough that so much is shot in Canada, but at least it doesnít look fake.

Itís not a bad movie.  Itís cute, itís funny, and if you need a good chuckle, itíll do the trick.  But after about 15 minutes or so, the fuzzy feeling inside goes away and what youíre left with is forgettable characters, forgettable setting, and throwaway entertainment.  It doesnít need to be seen on the big screen, so feel free to wait for the video release if you havenít seen it already at the movies.    

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