Dumb and Dumberer
Studio: New Line
Film Length: 96 minutes
Aspect Ratio: Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1)
Audio: DD 5.1 Surround, DD Stereo Surround
Subtitles: English, Spanish
In 1994 the Farrelly Brothers (Peter and Bobby) kicked down the door with their first film Dumb and Dumber, which came out of nowhere and became a surprise hit at the box office. Starring Jim Carrey as Lloyd Christmas and Jeff Daniels as Harry Dunne the film took these two friends and threw them into a wild adventure full of gross and outrageous humor. The director’s would continue this style of humor in upcoming films such as Kingpin and There’s Something About Mary. Considering Dumb and Dumber was such a hit it was natural for a sequel to follow. Nine years later fans got Dumb and Dumberer but without the same cast and director’s you pretty much know what to expect.
The film takes place in 1985 as Harry (Derek Richardson) is about to attend high school, which will be his first time in a public school. Harry was the product of home school by his mother but she feels it’s time for her son to get out into the real world and make friends. On his way to school the dumb Harry gets lost and eventually bumps into the dumber Lloyd (Eric Christian Olsen) who is also lost. The two join forces and head to school to take things over but of course the dumb duo are the laughing stock of the school.
Inside the school Principle Collins (Eugene Levy) has his own plans for the new year. A rich guy is offering every school one hundred thousand dollars if they create a class for the mentally challenged. Collins along with his girlfriend plans to create a fake class so that they can steal the money and head to the beach. The only way to get their fraud going is to find a couple dumb students to recruit over dumb students for this class. Of course this challenge falls into the laps of Harry and Lloyd and they do their best to gather other dumb students. However, the beautiful school reporter Jessica Matthews (Rachel Nichols) seems to know something is wrong with this class so she begins to investigate and befriends the two dumb friends who happen to fall in love with her.
I have to be honest and say I was pretty disappointed when Dumb and Dumberer showed up by FedEx because I really didn’t want to see the thing after hearing so many bad reviews. Every film critic seemed to give the film no higher than one star and the film is in the bottom one hundred at the IMDB. I went into the film expecting something truly horrible and that’s pretty much what I got but there are a few funny scenes and one extremely funny scene that makes me want to tell people they should check the film out. I certainly wouldn’t spend over two dollars on the movie but if you get the chance to view it for free go ahead and give it a shot.
I’ll start with all the badness in the film. For starters, I was dying for a sequel to the original film but this certainly isn’t what I wanted. I really hate when characters are brought back and none of the original stars are playing the original roles. I know this is a prequel but I’m guessing this was made over a sequel because either Carrey or Daniels weren’t interested in another film. Any sequel or prequel should have been put on the shelf since neither of them were involved but what we have here is a poor excuse to milk money from the fans of the original film. Looking at the box office totals apparently fans didn’t fall for this movie so good for them.
The biggest problem is the film is trying way too hard to be funny. You can tell the actors are over doing everything from their lines to their facial expressions trying to make us laugh but the screenplay resorts to jokes from the first film and they simply don’t work here. Another problem is the incredibly annoying lead actors who really don’t add anything to the roles. I know they are playing younger versions of Carrey and Daniels but instead of acting like them, the new actors simply mock them and try to follow in their footsteps. Again, perhaps this is to be expected but all it does in the end is make us feel sad that Carrey and Daniels aren’t here.
The majority of the jokes are very stupid and don’t get any chuckles let alone laughs. We get stupid fart jokes and stupid jokes about one friend’s mother hitting on the other. As I mentioned earlier there are some funny scenes and one hilarious scene that centers around Harry and his so-called date with Jessica at her house. Harry is expecting to lose his virginity and this here leads to some very big laughs. There’s some toilet humor in the bathroom, which had me laughing harder than any recent film I can recall. This scene here would make me tell you to check the film out on television. Bob Saget has a few good scenes but poor Eugene Levy is pretty much wasted throughout the film. Dumb and Dumberer is a pretty bad movie but the date scene is worth a Cinemax viewing.
VIDEO---The movie is shown widescreen (1.85:1) and is enhanced for 16x9 TVs. I’ve reviewed several New Line discs over the past couple months and I’m really starting to have trouble talking about their video quality because each transfer keeps getting better and better. The transfer here is near brilliant with very strong and vibrant colors. The flesh tones look correct and there’s no a spec a dirt on the print. There are a few scenes with EE visible but you really can’t notice unless you’re looking for it.
AUDIO---The Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround track is also brilliantly done. The vocals are upfront and are crystal clear with the Surrounds perfectly used for the music score and other sound jokes. A DD Surround track is also included.
EXTRAS---First up is an audio commentary with director Troy Miller, star Eric Christian Olsen and Derek Richardson. The three constantly talk throughout the track but unless you’re a fan of the film I doubt you’ll last the entire track. They tell various behind the scenes stories but again, none are interesting enough for anyone who didn’t enjoy the film. A second commentary track by two so-called critics is also included but this is a joke. They start off the track by calling this one of the greatest movies ever made and for the next two minutes they hype the film up bigger than Citizen Kane. There’s also a third commentary track by “The Ciccone Family”, which again only lasts for two minutes. This is a “joke” track with an Italian family eating dinner and watching the opening credits of the film.
Up next is a featurette called Casting the Perfect Dummies[/b], which lasts just over twenty-five minutes and features interviews with Olsen, Richardson and the director. We are shown some screen test footage and the three talk about the roles and the original film. Dumb and Dangerous: Making Dumb and Dumberer runs just under twenty-minutes and gives more talk about the film. Nothing too interesting here. Lost and Found features nine deleted scenes including an alternate opening. All of the scenes have an optional commentary track by the director and editor. Also included is a blooper reel, which should have been used in the actual film over what was finally shown. Finally we get the film’s theatrical trailer as well as the trailer for the first film.
OVERALL---This is certainly a film that should have never been made but I really didn’t find it as bad as many claimed. While most of the jokes fall flat on their faces there are a few funny moments and the date scene is also enough to make me recommend the film. However, spend your money on the first film and save this one for a free showing. New Line once again delivers a perfect video transfer and a nice audio track. If you’re a fan of the film you’ll be very happy especially with all the extras.
Release Date: November 11, 2003