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|August 19, 2000||
Outrageoulsy funny or just plain outrageous?
I'm in two minds about Me, Myself & Irene.
Some would find the movie outrageously funny; others would be simply outraged at its unabashed political incorrectness. Me, Myself & Irene leaves no stone unturned in the lowbrow crudity department.
Just when I thought the Farrelly brothers could stoop no lower than their hugely successful misanthropic comedy, There's Something About Mary, they go several notches lower with this film, continuing to explode taboos against offensive content. The movie manages to belittle women, gays, blacks, single mothers, albinos, the handicapped, midgets and the mentally ill. Not to mention making light of dismemberment and serial murder -- all in a single viewing. Then again, what else can one expect from a Farrelly venture?
If you think triangles have been done to death, Me... will prove you wrong. The lovely Renee Zellweger (of Jerry Maguire fame) loves Jim Carrey. But Jim Carrey is in love with Renee Zellweger. Confused? Read on for enlightenment…
Charlie (Jim Carrey) is a thoroughly likable Rhode Island cop, single-handedly bringing up three big-bodied, foul-mouthed African-Americans with genius IQs (Anthony Anderson, Mongo Brownlee and Jerod Mixon). They are his estranged wife's three sons of ambiguous parentage. Charlie suffers from a split personality disorder and mutates into Hank, whenever confronted with conflict or insolence.
Good-natured and gallant Charlie is the proverbial doormat while Hank is his lustful and foul-mouthed alter ego. Irene (Renee Zellweger) is the waifish out-of-towner who's on the run from a former boyfriend who is trying to implicate her in a murder. Charlie wants to extricate Irene from trouble and nurtures a courtly and deferential love for her. While Hank's Dirty Harryish impulses are progressively more about lust and less about revenge as the movie goes on.
So much for the plot. Now for the intricacies. Jim Carrey's transitions between characters -- from the touchingly endearing Charlie to the immoral Hank -- are the marks of a genuinely gifted comedian. It's his movie all the way. He retains his ability to amaze and startle with his body and face. Zellweger's girl-next-door quality is the perfect foil to Carrey's explosive histrionics.
The narrative format of the film, rendered by Rex Allen Jr, hits the right note.
One can be excused for thinking Me, Myself & Irene is an amalgammation of other Farrelly Brothers' films -- it's as idiotic as Dumb And Dumber and as gross as There's Something About Mary. For the Farrellys, there's no such thing as going too far. Other directors might make feeble attempts at lowbrow bathroom humour but the Farrellys cheerfully go at it with hammer and tongs until one part of their audience is utterly grossed out and the other is collapsing in hysterics.
As for me, I winced and squirmed but I also laughed and chuckled. If you respond to the sort of comedy that is unabashedly low and brazenly dirty, you will get more than your money's worth with Me, Myself & Irene. If you don't, omit all Farrelly movies from your list of films to see!
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