This is an enjoyable and amusing action/romantic comedy that gets perhaps a little too carried away in terms of execution but is quite funny and consistently funny throughout its run time.
I don’t really know why it took me so long to see this movie. I generally enjoy both these actors and the premise, which I was familiar with for some reason, didn’t put me off. But I guess I just didn’t make it a priority.
The premise is silly, sure, but no sillier than any number of other action comedies or romantic comedies. Though I do not have children, most of my friends do and, even without children, I can relate to being exhausted all the time in your 40s and feeling like you don’t do anything exciting any more. It’s possible I liked this more now than I would have when it came out, when I had yet to turn 30.
The laughs are pretty consistent both in terms of the set pieces and the dialogue. Carrell and Fey work well together and have been given a script that tries to get in as many good lines as possible. The surrounding cast is ridiculous, though significantly more ridiculous now than in 2010. The number of famous people in this movie, with small roles, is almost worth the price of admission.
My biggest quibble is the car chase, which both feels even more impossible than every other part of the film, and also contains a few effects that look bad. (I don’t know if they would look bad in 2010 but they look bad now.) It is the least consistently funny part of the movie to boot. I think they would have been better off with a different sequence.
But, fortunately, one of the funniest parts of the movie happens immediately afterwards, featuring just a ridiculous performance by William Fichtner. I’m happy to say that this is one of those movies that doesn’t drop the humour for the climax (though the romance is upped for the denouement).
I quite enjoyed it.