January 3, 2011

Movie Review: Gulliver's Travels in 3D (2010)

gulliverstravels1_largeWhen I first heard about this new take on Gulliver's Travels with Jack Black I was curious. I like Black and I bet it could be pretty funny. Then footage started coming out and my hopes dropped, it did not look good at all. The buzz seemed to support my dropped expectations. There was a lot of negative word surrounding it and it successfully killed my idea of seeing the movie. It went on the list alongside Yogi Bear, Little Fockers, and the new Chronicles of Narnia movie as movies I planned on skipping this holiday season. Then I perused Roger Ebert's three star review and the idea of sitting through Gulliver re-entered my mind.

Well, I did it. I went to the theater got those plastic-wrapped 3D glasses and made my down the hall. All the while I was dreading that I had made a very grave mistake. You see, these are things that happen when someone runs out of options and hungers for sitting in a theater with that big silver screen and a big bag of popcorn. I think there may be something wrong.

Now, here I am in the somewhat harsh afterglow of the movie and while it is not a good movie by any stretch it is not terrible. At least, it is not nearly as bad as I was expecting it to be. It is not something I would recommend running out to see, but for a family friendly Jack Black vehicle it is serviceable enough.


Do not go in thinking you are going to see a faithful adaptation of the Jules Vern classic. Considering it stars Jack Black I doubt that thought ever entered your head. In any case, this is not a movie looking for grand adventure, socio-political undertones, or anything resembling intelligence. Let's just say that one of the conflicts is resolved by a rendition of "War (What is it Good For?)" No, I'm not kidding.

I have to be honest, I somewhat identified with Jack's Gulliver early on. The speech that TJ Miller's character gave hit close to home. It is a little sad when I start to think about identifying with a movie such as this, but there it is. It actually drew me into Gulliver's journey.

As the story goes, Gulliver is stuck in the mail room of a newspaper office, has a crush on one of the editors (Amanda Peet), and is stuck in a rut. He pretends to be a writer and gets sent on an assignment to the Bermuda Triangle. One bad storm later and he finds himself tied up by the little people of Lilliput. He is a beast, pees on a fire and becomes their defender. The kingdom is run by Billy Connolly and Catherine Tate, and their daughter the princess played by Emily Blunt. There is also the General (The IT Crowd's Chris O'Dowd) who does not like the beast nor the guy who looked at his girlfriend, the princess, the wrong way (Jason Segel).


Thinking back on the 90-minutes I spent watching this movie not much really happened. I was entertained. I like Jack Black's shtick, no this is not School of Rock level Black, but it will do. I am not sure why I was entertained. Not much of anything happens. It is not laugh out loud funny. It just sort of is. I am not ashamed for liking it, there is just not much to get excited about.

Not Recommended.

Related Posts with Thumbnails


Post a Comment