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Me, Myself & Irene   D+

20th Century Fox

Year Released: 2000
MPAA Rating: R
Directors: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly
Writers: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly, Mike Cerrone
Cast: Jim Carrey, Renée Zellweger, Robert Forster, Chris Cooper, Richard Jenkins, Jerod Mixon, Jerry Brownlee, Anthony Anderson.

Review by Michael Scrutchin

As far as I'm concerned, the Farrelly Brothers have created some of the wittiest, funniest lowbrow gross-out comedies of the 1990s. From Dumb and Dumber to There's Something About Mary, a smile always creeps across my face when I think back upon the hilarious gags in both of those films. The wonderful Kingpin gets my vote for the best Farrelly Brothers film, though. The worst Farrelly Brothers film? That would be Me, Myself & Irene by a long shot.

Charlie (Jim Carrey) is a hard-working Rhode Island state trooper and loving father to his three black sons. His wife left him for a black midget, you see, but Charlie never once let the thought enter his mind that those kids aren't really his. Charlie lets people walk all over him, and he never confronts his problems or stands up for himself. That's where Hank comes in. Hank is Charlie's foul-mouthed, badass other personality who pops up every once in awhile. Charlie soon hits the road with a beautiful girl named Irene (Renée Zellweger), who is on the run from her bad guy ex-boyfriend and corrupt cops (or something like that). But, of course, Charlie forgets his medication for repressing his split personality. Both Charlie and Hank start to fall for Irene.

Watching Me, Myself & Irene, I kept hoping for a quick end to all the madness. It just seems to drag on and on with very few laughs along the way. The scene where Irene catches Charlie in bed with a mug shot of her and a bottle of hand lotion on the nightstand is funny. And the scenes with his three black sons are amusing -- those guys are real scene-stealers -- but most of the movie is a complete misfire.

The screenplay for Me, Myself & Irene was actually a decade old spec script the Farrellys had written with their childhood friend Michael Cerrone. After the success of There's Something About Mary, I guess they figured they had to get another movie out pretty quick. And even though they revised the script for Jim Carrey, it still reeks something awful. The plotting is vague and meandering, most of the characters are paper-thin and boring, and the jokes are mean-spirited and crude -- but overwhelmingly unfunny.

Jim Carrey does pull off some impressive physical slapstick, but it's all got a been-there, done-that kinda vibe. Renée Zellweger isn't given much to do besides pout and stand around looking pretty, while Chris Cooper's corrupt cop is lost here. But Jerod Mixon, Jerry Brownlee, and Anthony Anderson (as Charlie's sons) get a thumbs up from me, since I actually enjoyed the scenes they appeared in.

Me, Myself & Irene seems like something the Farrelly Brothers would have written in junior high. Sure, toilet humor, dildo jokes, and gags about big boobs can be funny -- so why wasn't I laughing?

Review published 06.30.2000.

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