Thursday, August 9, 2012
Mr. Popper's Penguins (Mark Waters, 2011) Review
Tom Popper (Jim Carrey) was never really close to his father but this doesn't stop him from leaving Tom something in his will. What would you expect in his will? Money, a house or maybe a pet or two, or three...or six. Tom receives a package to which he finds the next step in his life, six pet penguins. Naturally, he wants to get rid of them but his kids grow an attachment to the penguins and the penguins grow an attachment to him. His antics catches the attention of zookeeper Nat Jones (Clark Gregg) who wants to take the penguins for his own. Now Tom has to make a choice: keep the penguins who love him or give them up to the zoo.
What surprised me the most about this film is the approach it took. It could have been a very stupid kids film but it isn't. Sure it's a kids film but it is in no way stupid. It's surprisingly funny and Jim Carrey keeps his zaniness to a minimum which may please those who don't like it when Jim Carrey goes crazy (like in The Mask and Batman Forever). Sure, it isn't his best work but it isn't his worst either. The penguins are just in it for the kids. They do make up the narrative but the whole reason for their existence is just for kids but I guess it's far considering that this is a kids film...a more mature kids film then I've seen in recent years.
There are still problems. You do grow to like the penguins but even so, they are a bit ridiculous. The filmhad already set itself up as a quite serious and realistic film and, by the end, you begin to question this films logic. Sure, it's a kids film but even so there are so scenes that seem out of place. It's also a little too kiddy for my liking. There are fart jokes...has it really come to this? REALLY?! You can do better.
Mr. Popper's Penguins is definitely a kids film, there's no way to ignore it. It isn't a terrible film but it isn't the best film ever. It is above average but it could have been better. I do like Jim Carrey in this and even Clark Gregg is very memorable and it's good to see him not being Agent Coulson and even an antagonist. If you haven't seen this film...I might recommend it if you enjoy Jim Carrey films. Basically, if you liked films such as Yes Man and films like Night At The Museum, you should enjoy this.
An enjoyable family film that, while it does have problems, is fun to watch and filled with great acting.