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Being lucky, I already saw "Yes Man" and was pleasantly surprised. Jim
Carrey is not really my all time favorite (despite his comic talent and
acting skills), but in this movie he seems to have hit the spot.
The story itself is really simple: Carl (Jim Carrey), a very negative man, goes to a meeting among the very positive Yes people, whose charismatic leader (Terence Stamp) preaches that one should say Yes to all questions and agree with all propositions. Carl is reluctantly convinced to try it out, and after meeting a girl on a scooter (the ever so lovely Zooey Deschanel) all sorts of things start happening around him. But being 100% positive might be tricky sometimes...
It is all very silly, of course - but this feel-good comedy has a small undertone of seriousness as well. And it has a great cast, many delightful scenes, a reasonably relaxed Jim Carrey and a lighthearted style. Y/N? I say Y.
Yes Man follows the same basic genre comedy structure that we've seen
an endless amount of times in the past few years. The main character
has a big problem, they work to solve that problem, the problem is
solved and happy times are had. Then another problem arises as a result
to the solution to the original problem. So everyone is sad. But then
that problem is solved and everyone lives happily ever after. And
there's a message about how to live your life sprinkled in there. For
every single comedy in the past few years with that structure, I've
gotten so bored by the time it's over because I just lose interest when
the drama comes in during the third act. I either don't care about the
characters or I don't care about the message.
Every comedy except for this one. Not only did I care about the characters so much (thanks mostly to the performances from Jim Carrey and Zooey Deschanel who put a beautiful, free-spirited romance at the core of this seemingly typical comedy) that I was emotionally impacted during that predictable turn for the worse near the end, but the message of the film was actually something that I found relatable to my own life which is something I've never experience during these kind of comedies. I'm definitely a man who doesn't really live his life (as cheesy as that sounds) because I isolate myself by making excuses to just be alone and not be with anyone. As a result, I was definitely more invested in this film than I have been with other comedies of the same vein.
Add to all this the fact that it's completely hilarious throughout to the point where I have no hesitation in calling it the funniest movie of the year and easily the best straight comedy (not that there have been many good ones; three by my count). Plus, of course, Zooey Deschanel is absolutely infectious in every moment she's on screen (especially her lovely singing). I love her more than air, and this is just another example of why that love is justified. Call it fanboyism if you must, but she's my #2 of the year in supporting actress right now falling second only to the Cruz. In summation, do yourself a favor and say yes to this great comedy.
I'm so sorry, I had to say it.
Yes Man was a delight to watch. Critics had panned it a bit, but
unfairly, in my view. Granted, it is formulaic, but it IS a rom-com,
and rom-coms have formulas. What made this film so great was the
natural charm of Zooey Deschanel. She is beautiful, of course, but not
in a "model-y" kind of way. She has always had a freshness and honesty
about her that makes her appealing. When I first saw her in "Almost
Famous," playing the older sister, I wished I had an older sister like
that. When she played the girl lead in Big Trouble, she was quirky, but
without any of the self-aware conceit that can often accompany quirky
young female actors. I will be kind and avoid names, but perhaps you
can picture in your mind some of the "Tragically Hip" and oh-so-cool
young actresses who do quirk with a smirk. Zooey Deschanel has an
innocence and a friendly quality that really make her shine, in the way
a flower shines.
Jim Carrey was also very good in this. He is who he is--- goofy and loopy and elastic. This wasn't a "Serious Role," such as Truman Show serious--- but wasn't over the top like Ace Ventura. Maybe he's mellowed with age. I liked him as a wild kid, but like him even more now that he is a bit "evened out." He is still hilarious--- but also a bit more human, and a bit more approachable.
This movie runs through its rom-com paces, but each new scene, while a bit predictable, was nonetheless a pleasure. I felt uplifted by the end, and am very glad I went, even in the blizzard occurring where I am now staying. It was worth it!
I went to this film as one of those process-of-elimination things: Valkry had Tom Cruise, my friend had already seen Benjamin Button, Spirit's show-times suck, my local theater is idiotic and not showing Doubt or Slumdog Millionaire, all leaving Yes Man which neither of us were enthused about, but hey! it got us out of the house. We were shocked to leave the theater with our lungs hurting. The movie was well thought, well executed, and the humor was smart, snappy, and so far from the usual toilet humor of Jim Carrey. I was throughly and delightfully surprised with this film. On the note of message: I think this film actually has a very valuable message. Never in the history of humankind has the average person had so many opportunities to live life in ways never before imagined, yet never before have we been so isolated. Our computers; our phones; our mp3s and ipods; dare I say it, our movies all keep us isolated from actual social interaction. We are skeptical and judgmental about those who actually seek social interaction and friendship (site: Norman) that we fail to realize we are the ones who are actually lame--we are the ones not gathering with the people we love and those we have yet to meet. We are the ones spending our nights lulled into lame predictability, sitting in front of our TVs, telling characters in films to "just snap it off already." Yes Man is not just a fun filled film. It is a well deserved social critique.
Being a teenager in the 1990's, I have to say I was never a big fan of
Jim Carrey's mainstream performances in the movies that made him the
star that he is today. Hits like Ace Ventura, Dumb & Dumber and Liar
Liar left me mostly indifferent to Carrey's rather obscene personality.
It was only when he shined in more complex roles like The Truman Show,
Man on the Moon and eventually Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
that I grew to respect the wide range of characters Carrey is able to
bring to life.
Over recent years, Carrey continued doing his thing, moving from comedy to dramatic roles and vice versa. The problem is that all of the sudden he wasn't alone in the ring anymore, and countless other comedians have tried to slip into his shoes to various degrees of success. There was no place to deny it; Carrey was in need of a hit to re-establish his place in the Hollywood sky.
Cue the brand new comedy Yes Man, that finds Carrey once again in his favorite "What if...?" sub-genre. This time around, he plays Carl, a lonely divorcée that has somehow alienated even his best friend (portrayed successfully by Wedding Crasher's Bradley Cooper). Carl is stuck in a dead-end job at a bank, yearns for his ex-wife and spends his evenings watching rented DVDs... all by himself. When an old friend introduces him to a corny self-help program (lead by a hilarious Terrence Stamp) that persuades him to answer "yes" to every question thrown his way, Carl's life takes a dramatic turn.
As expected, the new approach gets our hero into all kinds of wacky situations - such as spending a steamy morning with his horny elderly neighbor (!); meeting a potential Iranian wife through an online service; partying all night whilst drinking countless cans of Red-Bull and over excessively helping a homeless person. Luckily enough, it also introduces him to the extremely free-spirited Allison (portrayed by the ever-so-cute Zooey Dashnel).
If you've seen the average Carrey comedy, you can probably guess how the plot unfolds from here on out, necessary complications included. The format is more or less the same of what we've been used to seeing Carrey perform in his comic outings, with the main idea being a modern moral story urging people to stop going through the motions of life and start seizing the day. But I digress. It seems as though years of perfecting his comic roles as well as starring in more "grown up" roles have tamed Carrey a bit. A lot of the arrogance and awkwardness revolving his earlier films seem to be missing this time out, and instead I could actually feel true emotion and heart in Yes Man. It seems as if this fact alone contributed greatly to the fact that most of the punch lines actually worked here and I found myself smiling for the larger part of the film.
Some points that still managed to ruin some of the fun are: A. As mentioned above, the film was very predictable, and formulated at that. B. Carrey has definitely aged recently, and it's starting to show. The age gap between him and Dashnel left me feeling somewhat uncomfortable.
However, all in all I had a great time with some excellent laughs - and at the end of the day that's what really counts (:
Despite the fact that I am a huge fan of Carrey, I admit a lot of his comedic performances are somewhat ridiculous. But this is legitimately a sensible comedy where he doesn't use a lot of his "Rubberface" antics and actually just acts funny. The premise of this film is intriguing and I loved watching it. Both Jim and Zooey are excellent the story is amazing. All the Carrey-haters should give this one a chance, it really deserves it. I think Jim's most recent movies have been great. It's his older movies that people hate him for. But he's becoming a legit dramatic actor who can also be funny. He sometimes goes over the top, but all-in-all he is a multi-faceted professional. This movie deserves a lot of praise because it is excellent. This brings back flashes of his performance in the extremely popular "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind". In closing, give "Yes Man" a chance. It's good for some laughs but also offers a very optimistic view on life in general.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
After commercial failures like Lemony Snicket, Fun with Dick and Jane
and The Number 23 Jim Carrey could use another hit. Yes Man might just
do the trick. It will undoubtedly not only mark Carrey's return to box
office greatness (a 45 million dollar opening (when there are no
snowstorms around)?), it will also go into history as the first movie
in which the Canadian born actor gets oral sex on screen. No kidding.
But more on that later.
Yes Man is a typical Jim Carrey feel good movie. Like Bruce Almighty (a human becomes God), The Mask (a mask transforms a zero into a hero) and Liar Liar (a man is forced to tell the truth all the time) the film has a strong but ridiculous premise. What would happen if you said yes to every offer that you got? The story features Carl Allen (Carrey), a dull man who got stuck in a dull life. He's living the same life for at least three years now ever since his girlfriend left him for another. His best friend Peter (Bradley Cooper) tries to draw him back into life, but Carl remains a hermit, saying no to every invitation he gets. When he accidentally forgets Peter's engagement party Carl decides to change his life drastically. He signs up for a Yes Man seminar by philosophy guru Terrence Bundley (Terrence Stamp) and embraces life by saying yes to any offer that's made to him. Guitar lessons, flying lessons, even a penis enlargement: Carl is your man. And wow, his life does get better. Carl not only gets a promotion, he also meets the charming Alison (Zooey Deschanel), a free spirit who sings in a band and has a job as a photographer. The two fall in love. But what happens when Alison finds out about his Yes Man way of life and begins to doubt if he really wants to choose for her?
Ever since I saw the trailer I wanted to see Yes Man. In dark times we all need a laugh and let's face it: there's a lot of truth in the fact that only a Yes opens up new opportunities in life. Luckily, Jim Carrey fans should not be worried: Yes Man delivers the goods. The story is safely predictable and although Carrey carries the movie, he gets help from a strong supporting cast. Terrence Stamp is great as Yes man guru. Bradley Cooper Carrey best friend in the movie - is a handsome man with some great screen presence. This movie could be his real breakthrough. But the real treat in Yes Man is Zooey Deschanel (The Happening, Bridge to Terabithia) as Carrey's love interest Alison. You can't help but falling in love with her in this movie. She's happily strange and immensely charming. I give her a 9/10 on the Drew Barrymore scale (with Drew having a 10/10 of course).
Storywise Yes man starts rather nice. When Carl learns that 'Yes' means progress and 'No' could mean punishment he reluctantly agrees to almost anything including his 70 year old toothless female neighbor giving him oral sex. I don't know what to think of the scene actually. It is funny, but it's a long way from the Claw in Liar Liar if you know what I mean. Needless to say, Yes man is not exactly family entertainment. On the other hand, in Transformers there was also a dialogue about masturbating. So maybe Hollywood is growing up. One of the funniest scenes is the one that follows the kissing of a beautiful girl in the bar (as seen in the trailer). Her boyfriend wants to beat up Carl and what follows is a very funny fight between a muscled dumbo and a very drunk Carrey. In this scene Carrey really shows his comedic talent. Pretty hilarious.
Overall Yes Man is nice entertainment. Carrey fans won't be disappointed and there are a lot of strong moments. Too bad the ending of the movie seems rushed. All the actions Carl undertakes under his Yes Man spell suddenly all turn out for the better (and that's just a little bit too convenient). The movie is only 82 minutes long and I suspect that there are a lot of scenes cut that could've given the story more drama and suspense. Despite the oral sex scene Yes Man is Jim Carrey's most romantic movie in a long while. Just watch the scene on the Hollywood Bowl stage... Well done!
I saw this movie as a early showing and having gotten the tickets for
free I said "what the heck, I'll see anything for free". So right off
the bat I went in with low expectations. The previews made it look like
the same old Jim Carrey Schtick. However, I was pleasantly surprised.
There was no ridiculous plot line (Liar Liar) or over the top characters (Ace Ventura) but a simple yet humorous story-line that is played to perfection by Carrey. There were plenty of good chuckles to be had and some down right laughs (and yes for those into it, a gross out scene that will make even this amazingly desensitized movie going generation cringe).
Overall, Yes Man is definitely worth the 10 bucks or so that movies are now ridiculously priced out now a days. But most definitely worth the trip if its free :-p.
After seeing "The Number 23" I was beginning to wonder if Jim Carrey
had renounced his trademark physical comedy roles he played to such
great effect in "Bruce Almighty", "Liar, Liar", "Dumb & Dumber", etc.
Carrey is back in form with "Yes Man". While the plot was lacking and somewhat formulaic, it was fun to watch the best physical comedy talent of our generation doing what he does best for two hours. Zooey Deschanel was good as the love interest (and she did a nice job singing to).
If you liked Carrey's earlier works, you'll find plenty to like in this movie. I hope Carrey keeps on doing these comedies. It's what he was born to do.
I always get excited about a new Jim Carrey movie. In my opinion, he has rarely done anything unwatchable in whatever genre from The Mask to Liar Liar via Eternal Sunshine of the spotless mind. Yes Man is an excellent feel-good comedy with an outstanding turn from Jim Carrey, Zooey Deschanel & Terence Stamp. The movie is unfortunately predictable (like most Jim Carey flicks) but very enjoyable with a hard-to-ignore message about how people should live their lives. Don't be surprised after seeing the film to start saying yes a bit more often and how much of a difference it may have on your daily life. Yes Man is a worthy addition to Jim Carrey's filmography.
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