Pitka, an American raised outside of his country by gurus, returns to the States in order to break into the self-help business. His first challenge is to settle the romantic troubles and subsequent professional skid of a star hockey player whose wife left him for a rival athlete.
Born in America, but raised in Havemahkeeta in India, with a population of 76, Maurice had always to better Deepak Chopra, and be sexually active, ever since he was 12. His Guru, Tugginmypudha, while approving of Deepak, cautions Maurice and has a chastity belt put around his waist, much to Maurice's chagrin. Years later, Maurice has established himself as Guru Pitka in America, but would like to appear in the Oprah Show and be better than Deepak Chopra. When Jane Bullard from the the Toronto Maple Leafs hires him to counsel their star hockey player, Darren Roanoke, to win back his wife, Prudence, from Kings' star player, Jacques Grande, and also stand up to his dominating mother, Lilian, he agrees to do so - with hilarious results.Written by
Mike Myers is a talented guy, but this vehicle is an embarrassment. The funniest parts are gleefully juvenile, but they are, unfortunately, outnumbered by gags that are simply juvenile or, worse yet, juvenile and mean-spirited. For example, some of the jokes directed at Verne Troyer's character sound like they were uttered by a 15-year-old classroom bully, not written by an intelligent man in his forties. I'm all in favor of offending PC sensibilities whenever possible, but do it right: cracks about Keebler elves show are just stupid and artistically lazy.
More scenes of young Pitka might have explained better how he grew into the adult he became, and Rajneesh could have been fleshed out a bit. I suspect that a lot of character development and back story were left on the cutting room floor. What should have been cut were the cameos that were either pointless or self-referential without being truly funny.
The plot wasn't exactly Citizen Kane quality, but it could have worked with better writing. After all, if anything cries out for satiric treatment, it's the self-help and New Age movements. With such target-rich subject matter, how did Myers manage to make such a dud? I think that it's a case of plain self-indulgence. Jim Carrey and Robin Williams are two other talented, over-the-top funny men who do some of their best work when they show restraint and don't play themselves. Someone should have reined in Myers on this one.
For his penance, I suggest that he lay off comedy for a while and do a few dramatic roles - including supporting ones - as he did (quite well) in "54." Williams and Carrey have shown other dimensions of themselves in dramatic roles, and I'm sure Myers can, too.
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