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Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Evan Almighty - review

Evan Almighty (PG)

Dir. Tom Shadyac

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

Let me ask you something. If someone prays for patience, do you think God gives them patience? Or will He maybe give them the opportunity to be patient?
If courage is prayed for, does God give you courage, or does He give you opportunities to be courageous? And if someone prays for their family to be closer, do you think God zaps them with warm fuzzy feelings, or does He give them more opportunities to love each other?
These are the theological idioms spouted by God (Morgan Freeman) in Evan Almighty – a quirky, gentle but not altogether successful follow up to 2003’s Bruce Almighty.
This time there’s no Jim Carrey so director Tom Shadyac has picked Steve ’40 Year Old Virgin’ Carell (who played the Carrey’s newsreader nemesis in the first film) to be the mortal whose life God decides to step into in a supposedly comical way. Alas Evan Almighty fails to raise many quality laughs relying on animals pooping jokes and unsightly facial hair of biblical proportions… However, once you get past the fact that you’re unlikely to be splitting you sides, the central premise of a modern day U.S. Noah's Ark story turns out to be a not altogether unenjoyable family friendly experience.
Evan you see is a man going places having just become a Congressman and he is all set for a successful career in politics, But when he is visited by God and asked to build an ark in order to survive a soon to occur flood (which is almost believably given the British summer weather this year) he’s not sure how he’s going to make it happen. Life gets complicated further when pairs of animals of every kind begin turning up unannounced and following Evan around. It doesn’t take long for Evan to be branded a ‘weirdo’ and his ark building project to make the TV news – seems today’s people are no more receptive to the pleas of a doom mongering prophet than they were in Old Testament. The climactic special effects however which sees the ark finally getting put through its’ paces are quite something to behold.
If you’re looking for comedy, Evan Almighty doesn’t really warrant missing out on the Simpson’s high jinks but if you’re seeking a summer holiday parable, which might make you pause and consider life, Evan’s your man.

Out of 5 you have to go with a hairy biblical 3 (nice but not that funny!)...

Darkmatters ratings:
Action ööö – the flood is class
Laughs öö – some but not enough to make it a 'comedy'
Horror ö – add some stars if you fear beards
Babes ö – nope

Overall ööö (God is giving you the opportunity to wait for this on DVD)

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