HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Mangler, The
Shiraz
Mercy, The
Kickboxer: Retaliation
Molly Maguires, The
Party, The
Dante's Peak
Housemaid, The
Vendetta
Brimstone
Boys in the Trees
Once Were Warriors
Red Planet Mars
Blade Runner 2049
Devil's Express
Belko Experiment, The
Flashback
War of the Arrows
One-Trick Pony
Cloverfield Paradox, The
Beach Rats
In Between
Flesh Feast
Gerald's Game
Crocodile Dundee II
Baaghi
Bat People, The
Kingsman: The Golden Circle
Tower
Message from the King
   
 
Newest Articles
They're All Messed Up: Night of the Living Dead vs Land of the Dead
The House, Black Magic and an Oily Maniac: 3 from 70s Weird Asia
80s Meet Cute: Something Wild vs Into the Night
Interview with The Unseen Director Gary Sinyor
Wrong Forgotten: Is Troll 2 Still a Thing?
Apocalypse 80s UK: Threads and When the Wind Blows
Movie Flop to Triumphant TV Revival: Twin Peaks and The League of Gentlemen
Driving Force: The Golden Age of American Car Chases
Madness in his Method: Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
   
 
  Ace Ventura: Pet Detective A Bit Of An AnimalBuy this film here.
Year: 1994
Director: Tom Shadyac
Stars: Jim Carrey, Courteney Cox, Sean Young, Tone Loc, Dan Marino, Noble Willingham, Troy Evans, Raynor Scheine, Udo Kier, Frank Adonis, Tiny Ron, David Margulies, John Capodice, Judy Clayton, Bill Zuckert, Alice Drummond, Rebecca Ferratti, Mark Margolis
Genre: Comedy
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Ace Ventura (Jim Carrey) is carrying a package of fragile glassware down the street, but has a strange way of going about it, taking every opportunity to shake, hit and kick it as he approaches the apartment he is heading for. Once at the front door, a big guy (Randall 'Tex' Cobb) answers and barely tolerates Ace asking for him to fill out the requisite form, though as he does the gruff man's pet dog approaches. Ace fusses over it and makes his exit, but as he walks purposefully from the building, the dog's head pokes out from under his shirt: Ventura is a pet detective, and he has been hired to track the pooch down by its rightful owner. Which is fair enough, but he does have a habit of getting into hot water...

Or even cold water when the mascot of the Miami Dolphins football team goes missing and our hero is invited in to investigate. 1994 was the banner year for Carrey, the one that broke him as a major star at the box office with three huge hits in a row, starting with this irreverent comedy that showcased his abilities to play as broadly as he could without losing the sympathies of the audience, indeed the more way out his performance became the better his fans liked it. He had been acting and performing comedy on the screen since the eighties, and sketch show In Living Color proved his breakthrough, bringing him to the worldwide fame that his fellow comedians on that could only dream of.

He proved an eccentric talent on and off the screen, very much subject to various whims which at times did him no favours, but his ingenuity when it came to securing laughs marked him out as one of the most distinctive comedians of the nineteen-nineties, and come the end of the decade, an accomplished serious actor as well, thus proving the sad clown cliché was correct as far as demonstrating his thespian chops went. But for those who followed him from his first big impact on the humour scene, they treasured that trio of films from this year, one of the most remarkable of any star of his generation, comedic or otherwise. His incredible dedication to getting a giggle out of the audience here, where every line was imbued with a near-insane degree of effort, was impressive.

You could tell Carrey's Ace was the beginning of a roll for him that obviously could not last forever, but assuredly made the cinemagoers of the world sit up and take notice (though not every viewer was sympathetic, actually there were those who couldn't stand his manic style). The character had a gimmick, more than one in fact, where he had a great respect for animals and that was channelled into a Sherlock Holmesian flair for detection, handy not simply for finding the dolphin but also uncovering the culprit. Now, while the opening half of this was very amusing, with Ace winding up all and sundry, authority figures a speciality, when he got down to brass tacks and grew closer to the nature of the crime (which progressed to include murder as well as kidnapping), the gags began to sour somewhat.

Gay rights groups complained when the villain of the piece emerged as, shall we say, a rather sexually confused personality, and while director Tom Shadyac had a point when he pointed out that Ace's revolted and traumatised reaction to kissing a man was absolutely ridiculous as in keeping with the rest of his behaviour, the complainers also had a point when they wondered if this wasn't the most positive representation of their genders in the movies. Not to mention the film's treatment of mental illness with as much sensitivity as a Three Stooges short from the thirties, and the punishment doled out to Sean Young's police lieutenant apparently because she doesn't find Ace as engaging as Courteney Cox's character does, Cox having been hired to look on adoringly and stifling chuckles as her hero irritates yet another boorish square. The defence that Ventura was essentially a cartoon in human form did not quite smooth over the film's reactionary qualities which were difficult to ignore as it wore on. When Carrey was on form, few in the nineties could touch him, and his sustained nuttiness was a marvel, but stick with the sequel to see Ace at his best. Music by Ira Newborn.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 610 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
  Andrew Irvine
Ian Phillips
Paul Shrimpton
   

 

Last Updated: