Rickey Gervais, Jennifer Garner, Louis C.K., Jonah Hill, Rob Lowe
Doctor: It does not look very good. She suffered a major heart attack. Her heart is very weak, her pulse is not very strong, her blood pressure is dropping rapidly, and she will probably suffer the fatal heart attack some time tonight. Yes…still going to die. Sidenote: it’s fajita night downstairs in the cafeteria, so you might want to grab yourself a little bite down there after mom dies.
In a world where humans can only tell the truth and have no idea what fiction is, Mark Bellison (Gervais) invents the concept of lying. He tries to use this to his advantage, with mixed results.
Speaking of mixed results, that’s what we get from this movie when it tries to be funny. There are some very funny moments, but there are also several lulls in which nothing much funny happens at all. Ricky Gervais is as good as always (if you like his brand of humor), and there are several good cameos as well, my favorite being a quick one from Jason Bateman as a much too honest doctor.
The problem is, the story takes a few obvious, inevitable turns that are not exactly rife with comedy gold. When Mark tries to comfort his dying mother with the idea of an afterlife, the movie starts down a road basically featuring a one joke premise that gets old pretty quick.
My theory on the origins of this movie is that somebody, or a group of people, was sitting around thinking of what the world would be like if nobody could lie. They came up with several funny little jokes and circumstances, then tried to write a movie around those jokes. What results is a reasonably funny movie with a dull love story that really gives no clue as to why Mark is so interested in Anna (Garner) in the first place – other than the fact that she looks like Jennifer Garner. It does, however, provide us with my new favorite slogan for Pepsi (which I drink every day): “Pepsi – When they don’t have Coke.”
I wish advertising like that would really take off because I think it would result in a lot of entertaining commercials. I think I might have to spend some time mulling over some good ideas in that realm. “Froot Loops – no fruit, lots of sugar, just like everybody really wants!”
We should all definitely lie as much as possible.
10 – 2.8 for only being sporadically funny – .7 for a pretty weak romance = 6.5