the fresh films reviews

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Yes Man (2008)

Peyton Reed
Yes Man
104 minutes
Jim Carrey
David Heyman
Richard D. Zanuck
Screenwriter (based on the book by Danny Wallace):
Nicholas Stoller
Jarrad Paul
Andrew Mogel

Cast includes:

Carl Allen Jim Carrey
Allison Zooey Deschanel
Peter Bradley Cooper
Nick John Michael Higgins
Norman Rhys Darby
Rooney Danny Masterson
Terrence Bundley Terence Stamp



There is a scene in Yes Man in which our two protagonists Carl and Allison go to the airport and decide to take a weekend trip to the destination of the first flight available. They end up in Lincoln, Nebraska, which at first glance perhaps isn't the most glamorous place in the world (a saccharine romantic comedy would probably send them to Paris), but neither the strangest place to end up (a more wacky comedy could have sent them to Juneau or Spitsbergen, for that matter). My point here is that this segment largely epitomise what Yes Man is about, because making a random trip to Lincoln, Nebraska and visiting the telephone museum or the local slaughterhouse is both exotic and mundane at the same time. These are the kinds of regular but unordinary things Yes Man wants the routine-bound, sofa-sitting no-man to do. None of us could actually go as far as Carl Allen does here when it comes to becoming a yes man, but we could all jump on a surprise flight and visit a museum in a place we've never dreamt of visiting before.

So that is the essence of Yes Man, the new and highly inspirational Jim Carrey movie. The synopsis and premise might sound like it is a slightly modified version of Liar Liar, but the tone and atmosphere is rather different. I submit that Liar Liar is a funnier film which utilizes Carrey's comedic talents more extensively, but in Yes Man he hits a human tone as well, a tone he rarely deployed in the early years of his career. And he projects the simple but powerful message of Yes Man quite convincingly, helped by Peyton Reed's unassuming direction. If a romantic comedy, in addition to getting quite a few laughs, actually makes you want to become a wee bit more positive and maybe say yes to a little something the next day which you would usually decline, then I say this is an effective movie which is worth two hours of anyone's time.


Copyright 16.1.2009 Fredrik Gunerius Fevang