"Bruce Almighty" - Movie Review
- Thursday, May 22, 2003
Bad: This is a Jim Carrey movie that kids will obviously want to see. However, because this PG-13 comedy skews to an adult audience with mature situations and material, this prevents me from suggesting it as a "kid friendly" or "family friendly" movie. And I'll be frank. There are elements in this movie that will probably offend many parents and even some adults without children: crude language, rude behavior, sexually suggestive dialogue and the fact that Grace lives with Bruce before they're married. But think about it … how can you show a character going through a spiritual transformation and changes in his life (and behavior) if you don't show the sinful side of him first? It's those very things that God exposes to Bruce that in the end, Bruce repents for and ends up changing. That's why I'm making the point that even though there are funny scenes and a very humorous side to this story, there is a serious side with a deeper message. So it's more of a movie for mature teens to adults.
Bottom Line: Shadyac takes a closer look at questions people ask about God and mixes it with a touch of irreverent humor only Carrey can deliver. The result is a story people can relate to in a humorous way. I dare say most of us have at least thought about "playing God" at one time or another and that's the appeal to this movie. This will be great fodder for the water cooler at work and an easy opener for discussion. Ask your friends if they were God, what's the first thing they would do. Pursuing the "why" of their answers will be your challenge, but that's what Shadyac hopes will happen. I think it's important to note that Shadyac is a Christian and considers movies his way and opportunity of "witnessing" to people. The underlying message of this movie is intended to make people think. So although you may not approve of all the questionable elements that are in this movie or support the way the story is told, this movie does have the potential to reach people who would never step inside a church, listen to Christian radio or watch Christian television. This is a movie that offers moments of laughter and an entertaining story, but it will leave you thinking about the spiritual elements long after you've left the theater. And that's the beauty of this story. Imagine going to a Jim Carrey movie to get a good laugh and walking away with a life-changing message!
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