6.0/10
87,036
128 user 188 critic

Mr. Popper's Penguins (2011)

Trailer
2:31 | Trailer
The life of a businessman begins to change after he inherits six penguins, and as he transforms his apartment into a winter wonderland, his professional side starts to unravel.

Director:

Mark Waters

Writers:

Sean Anders (screenplay), John Morris (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jim Carrey ... Mr. Popper
Carla Gugino ... Amanda
Angela Lansbury ... Mrs. Van Gundy
Ophelia Lovibond ... Pippi
Madeline Carroll ... Janie
Clark Gregg ... Nat Jones
Jeffrey Tambor ... Mr. Gremmins
David Krumholtz ... Kent
Philip Baker Hall ... Franklin
Maxwell Perry Cotton ... Billy
James Tupper ... Rick
Dominic Chianese ... Reader
William Charles Mitchell William Charles Mitchell ... Yates (as William C. Mitchell)
Henry Kelemen ... Young Tommy Popper (as Henry Keleman)
Kelli Barrett ... Tommy's Mom
Edit

Storyline

Tom Popper (Jim Carrey) grew up having very little interaction with his father, who was off exploring the world. When he grows up, he spends most of time on his work and ignores his children. One day his father sends him an unusual gift: a penguin. Popper can't help but wonder why his father would send him a penguin. He tries to get rid of it, but accidentally orders five more. When his children and ex-wife show up to celebrate his son's birthday, the kids are taken with the penguins. And Popper finally gets to connect with his kids while his work suffers. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Family | Fantasy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild rude humor and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Tom's daughter is called Jane. Jim Carrey's daughter in real life is called Jane. See more »

Goofs

The babysitter's coat is buttoned up as she is about to sit down to watch TV, but it's wide open as she runs out the door. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Popper: Hello! I have to send the penguins back.
Voice On Phone: Send-da-penguin?
Mr. Popper: Yes, send penguins.
See more »

Crazy Credits

No penguins were harmed in the making of this film. Jim Carrey, on the other hand, was bitten mercilessly. But he had it coming. See more »

Connections

References Bend It Like Beckham (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Sweet n' Lo
Written by Erwin Lehn
Courtesy of Extreme Music
See more »

User Reviews

 
Contrived, but still Charming
25 June 2011 | by beccad90See all my reviews

Before I begin, let me say this: I like Jim Carrey. I really do. In fact, I watched Ace Ventura: Pet Detective back when I was a kid, and I still find it funny today. But, as with most actors and comedians, there is that little thing called shtick. Don't we all see a pattern when we see those familiar faces on the screen? In fact, it seems to generate the same kind of reaction: We become endeared to it at first, but then it gets real by the time the fourth or fifth movie rolls around. Will Ferrel, Adam Sandler and even Carey himself, are all the biggest 'offenders,' so to speak, in this day and age. But, for the sake of this interview, let's focus on the latter, and how this movie relates to his 'shtick.' The movie in question, if it wasn't obvious already, is Carey's latest venture, Mr. Popper's Penguins. Based loosely—the key word being 'loosely'—on the 1938 novel by Richard and Florence Atwater, "Penguins" tells the story of a work-obsessed businessman named Tom Popper, whose life is turned upside down when he inherits six penguins from his late explorer father. As is wont, his cold heart begins to melt by means of the flightless, cold-loving birds. In the meanwhile, he tries to evade suspicions of his bosses, a respected entrepreneur, and a brown-nosing zoo keeper while also rekindling his relationship with his estranged ex-wife and kids. And, yes, that's the plot in a nutshell. But, does that mean it's as mind-numbing as it sounds? No, my friends. It's not as bad as it seems.

First off, let's get the downside out of the way. The plot is thoroughly and shamelessly predictable. It is riddled with so many clichés, that I could sit there, predict every turn the movie was going to take and be right. Also, I sat there and counted six—yes, six—poop or fart jokes. There may have been a couple that I missed during a bathroom break, but I'm sure there were a couple more that I could have counted. I blush to admit it, but I do laugh at potty humor, but only when I don't expect it or it makes the movie actually funny. Again, predictability killed the mood for me.

However, for all its faults, it's more charming than repulsive. Carrey, though he is relying on his standard, over the top shtick, is not overshadowing those adorable penguins. But, aside from Carrey, his six co-stars, and his estranged family, there are two saving graces for this movie. Mr. Popper's secretary, Pippi (played by British actress Ophelia Lovibond) is a prim little poppet with a penchant for alliterating all her sentences with any and every word beginning with the letter P. She does grate a little bit, but she is still quite adorable. The other actress to show her face here is the great Angela Lansbury, who plays the owner of a restaurant that Popper used to eat at with his late father. It is so refreshing to see this woman on the silver screen again, especially for a girl who grew up with the likes of Beauty and the Beast and Bedknobs and Broomsticks (There's alliteration there, too, eh? Oh, darn this movie!). She still retains that grace and charm through all the forced dialogue and situations, and I applaud her for that.

Overall, my feelings for this movie can best be summed up by its summary on RottenTomatoes.com: "Bland, inoffensive, and thoroughly predictable, Mr. Popper's Penguins could have been worse…but it should have been better." But for all its faults, its charming, fun and completely harmless. It's probably best for kids, but animal lovers will love the cuddly penguins, and Carrey fans will like seeing their idol on screen. Give it a shot and decide for yourselves.


52 of 66 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 128 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 June 2011 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mr. Popper's Penguins See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,445,355, 19 June 2011

Gross USA:

$68,224,452

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$187,361,754
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

We've Got Your Streaming Picks Covered

Looking for some great streaming picks? Check out some of the IMDb editors' favorites movies and shows to round out your Watchlist.

Visit our What to Watch page



Recently Viewed