The Whole Ten Yards


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The Whole Ten Yards
The Masked Reviewer

It's amazing to the Masked Reviewer to see how movie titles have changed over the years.  In the old days, when you did a sequel to a film, you just slapped a number on the end.  If you considered your film to be especially important, you might use roman numerals (like Rocky III).  But now, the trend seems to be to come up with "cleverer" names.

2 Fast, 2 Furious springs to mind.  How about Grumpier Old Men?  Or the aptly named Dumb and DumbererOcean's Twelve is already in the works (the sequel to Ocean's Eleven) and Seriously Dude, Where's My Car? is in production.  In case you didn't know, that's the sequel to Dude, Where's My Car? although, it would have been much funnier and more surprising if it turned out to be a sequel to Schindler's List.

So, what's next?  Will Michael Moore's next documentary be called Bowling Five Columbine?  Will Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman reunite to make Ei8ht, the sequel to Se7en?  Or perhaps Dolly Parton, Lily Tomlin, and Jane Fonda will get together to create Ten Three Six (think about it).

Most of the original cast returns to The Whole Ten Yards, including Kevin Pollack, whose character was killed off in the first film.  How?  What?  Why?  The Masked Reviewer would like to tell you, but because he doesn't give spoilers, you'll just have to wonder, or see the movie.

If you like Bruce Willis, this movie features Bruce Willis x 10.  He's Uber-Willis.  He takes his character, Jimmy "the Tulip" Tudeski way over the top.  In fact, at times, it's a little embarrassing to watch.  If you saw Harrison Ford in Hollywood Homicide, you may know what the Masked Reviewer is referring to.  However, Bruce Willis manages to push it so hard and for so long that it actually gets funny as it continues. 

As a matter of fact, Matthew Perry, Kevin Pollack, and Amanda Peet are all working hard in this one.  They relentlessly push for the laughs.  And it's a good thing that they push, too, because the only laughs to be had in this movie are forcibly wrung out of the horrible and confusing script.  Matthew Perry falls down a lot and everything is played big.  Kevin Pollack's character is a cartoonish caricature of his character from the first film, which was a cartoonish caricature to start with.  Amanda Peet's charmingly awkward character is still charming, but much goofier than before.

The plot of the film is superfluous and convoluted.  In essence, The Whole Ten Yards feels like a sit-com, with characters you already know (if you've seen the first film) being put in a slightly different situation.  That'd be fine, and would make for a possibly amusing movie.  But, for some reason, a twisty and confusing b-story was intertwined that serves only to annoy and distract the audience from the characters.  It's not a movie that you want to sit around and discuss with your friends for two hours afterward to figure out what the hell was going on.

Matthew Perry arguably has his funniest moment on the big screen in this film, during a rant in his office.  Bruce Willis, Kevin Pollack, and Amanda Peet all get their share of the laughs, too, though this comedy falls flat frequently. 

If you loved The Whole Nine Yards, there's a good chance you'll enjoy this one, though a considerably less chance that you'll love this one, too.  If you missed the first movie, you may find this one to be even more confusing, because very little effort is expended in telling you who everyone is and how they know each other.  It's not like this is intended to be an epic or important seems rather odd to leave a lot of your audience in the dust if they haven't seen the original.

Hardcore fans of Bruce Willis may enjoy his over-the-topedness, but it can be off-putting at times, too.  Matthew Perry fans may find his slapstick to be a bit much, but he does pull some good laughs out of his hat (figuratively).  Amanda Peet fans will enjoy seeing her on screen, though if you're hoping for a repeat of her show-stopping breast display, you'll be sadly disappointed.  Her breasts are featured in one scene, but they aren't seen, they're merely a plot device.

There are some good laughs, but not enough to warrant a Smiley Mask.  Perhaps some nudity would have put it over the edge.  The direction wasn't very good, of the scenes that did have a good laugh wasn't edited in a way so that the audience could hear the dialogue after the big joke.

It's not the worst thing you'll see, but not the best, either.


Expectation from the Title: The third part in the trilogy that chronicles the epic journey of a young woman to find the right aisle in Costco.  First there was The Skim Twenty Feet, then there was The 2% A Mile and a Half.  Will her quest ever end?

Mother's Rule (Always Say Something Good About Everything):  Matthew Perry is a very nice man.

The Pros: Some genuinely good (the Masked Reviewer would even say "hardy") laughs.

The Cons: No nudity by Amanda Peet.  Writing is uneven.  Plot is distractingly bad and complicated. 


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