Monday, January 9, 2017

Movie Review: "The Nutty Professor" (1996)

Image Source
Director: Tom Shadyac
Year: 1996
Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 1 hour, 35 minutes

An overweight science professor develops a serum that makes him magically thin. Unfortunately, it has a side effect that makes him outrageously obnoxious. 

"The Nutty Professor" is directed by Tom Shadyac and is a remake of the 1963 Jerry Lewis comedy of the same name. It takes a different approach to the film compared to the original, which was about being cool versus being a nerd. This version focuses on being fat versus being thin. It stars Eddie Murphy as Sherman Klump, Buddy Love, Lance Perkins, Papa Klump, Mama Klump, Grandma Klump, and Ernie Klump. That's right, Eddie Murphy plays about seven roles in this film. We are just waiting for the movie where Murphy will play every single character and will spend the whole damn film talking to himself, which really isn't a stretch at this point. He comes pretty close here as there are a couple of scenes where all five characters are played by Murphy only as he sits in various forms of make up talking to himself but really talking to each other. Joining Murphy is Jada Pinkett Smith, who plays Carla Purty in a rather empty role and performance. Carla becomes the would-be love interest of both Professor Klump and Buddy Love, who are technically the same person despite their vast differences.

With a primary focus on the weight of the protagonist, "The Nutty Professor" winds up being one long, boring extended fat joke which we can appreciate if done right, but here, it's done terribly and in an unfunny fashion to boot. It perpetuates stereotypes that overweight people eat constantly and have little control over their bodily functions. It tries to redeem itself by showing how many of these fat jokes are hurtful to Klump, but in a way that damns the very thing it expects the audience to laugh at. You can't really have it both ways. You can't condemn making fun of fat people while spending an hour and a half making fun of fat people. On top of this, the movie isn't the slightest bit humorous and only has a couple of fleeting moments of laughter and/or entertainment.

Despite the fact that we respect the time Eddie Murphy likely had to spend in the makeup chair to flush out his various roles, the result wasn't worth the effort for a shtick that gets really old really fast. We really dislike "The Nutty Professor."

My Rating: 2/10
BigJ's Rating: 2.5/10
IMDB's Rating: 5.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 64%
Do we recommend this movie: AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment