I remember seeing the trailer for The Incredible Burt Wonderstone back in January and saying to myself “Oh look, a comedy film I am actually interested in seeing.” And I really needed it after being tricked by that other filthy film called Movie 43. So this was my first comedy film of this year and I was hoping for something good especially since Jim Carrey was involved. So I watched the film yesterday and it ended up not being nearly as good as I’d hoped but I still had a bit of fun with it.
The story involves Burt Wonderstone and Anton Marvelton, they’re friends who have been doing magic together since they were kids and when they grow up they become successful Las Vegas magicians who have been performing the same show for years. After a while there show starts to become stale so hey attempt snow new, but when Anton is injured in a performance, Burt is left vulnerable to competition. That competition comes in the form of Steve Gray, an edgy street magician who does extremely strange and disgusting tricks that captures the attention of most audiences.
The plot in this film is alright though uneven in places. Also when certain characters come into play you sort of see what their role will be or how they will interact with each other a little while later. A lot the film was predictable, not that funny and inconsistent. There was potential for this film, while it deals in the realm of magic performances, the change in times and what has become the norm for magicians moving from the stage to the street and television, those elements aren’t fully looked into and not executed as well as they could have been.
Now let’s move onto characters. Steve Carell as Burt Wonderstone was decent. Carell played the lead magician in the Las Vegas show along with his friend Burt. Now for me Steve Carell is one of those actors that can go one of three ways; really good, average or just bad. This time he was average, his humour just wasn’t as strong as some of his other films and I wasn’t laughing as much as I would like to. I really liked Steve Buscemi as Anton Marvelton; he was Burt’s partner and long-time friend. I am a big fan of Steve Buscemi and I liked how clueless and strange his character was and it was definitely a difference from seeing him in Boardwalk Empire. Olivia Wilde as Jane was nice; she plays Burt and Anton’s assistant who dreams of becoming a magician herself. Wilde still looks as pretty as ever and she plays her role well, though this role could have been played by many other female actresses too.
Alan Arkin was pretty funny as Rance Holloway. Arkin played an old magician who inspired Burt to become a magician. I liked the character, his dialogue and how active he was regardless of his old age. James Gandolfini as Doug Munny was alright, he was the billionaire owner of the venue where Burt and Anton performed. I didn’t care much for his character. Jim Carrey was great as Steve Gray. He was like a weird version of David Blaine who was very big-headed and bit of jerk. Carrey was in very good shape in this film, I was surprised with his physique. But besides his good shape I thought his performance in the film was great, his whole use of physical comedy reminded me so much of his days back in the 90s doing stuff like The Mask and Ace Ventura. This is the Jim Carrey that I’ve missed over the last few years. One last thing to note, I just wanted to say that I loved the appearance of Gillian Jacobs as Miranda, as a fan of Community that just made me absurdly happy to see her there.
In conclusion The Incredible Burt Wonderstone is decent comedy, but it really does fall short of the laughing standard that should come with films in this genre. The plot is fairly weak and predictable as are the jokes and actions of some of the characters involved too. But that’s not to say it’s all bad, it does have Jim Carrey and some other funny elements here and there, however without Carrey I don’t think this film would have worked as well as it did.
Rating: 6/10 (I have seen funnier but I’d say still give it a try)
So what did you think of The Incredible Burt Wonderstone? Did you like it or hate it? Whatever your thoughts drop them below and let me know yo! Until the next review I’ll see ya later. 🙂