By: Da’Mon Guy
Dinner for Schmucks is a moderately humorous happenstance that blurs the line of being an enjoyable, amusing comedy and an humorless mind-numbing absurdity. This muddled experience is a humorous attempt to ridicule the more oddly eccentric characters within our society. It stars Paul Rudd (I Love You, Man), Steve Carell (Date Night), Stephannie Syzostak (The Devil Wears Prada), Zack Galfinikas (Due Date), and Jermaine Clement (Despicable Me). It also features Bruce Greenwood (Star Trek 2009), Lucy Punch (Hot Fuzz) in lesser supporting roles.
After an executive is fired, an aspiring financial advisor seeks to assume his position. He quickly convinces his boss to allow him the opportunity to gain the position he covets but with conditions. He must attend a monthly dinner with the rest of the corporate yuppies, however there’s a catch, the dinner is a chance for the yuppies to mock at the less fortunate, more eccentric, characters that attend. They call them idiots.
Paul Rudd and Steve Carell make a good comedic tandem. The two play of one another well within this muddled subterfuge of misfortune. Rudd plays Tim, an aspiring executive who is stuck in an existence of unfulfilled opportunities. Rudd as the straight man is an accustomed role that he depicts very well. Rudd’s straightforward portrayal opens the door for a zany over the top performance by Steve Carell. Carell gives a great performance as the dim witted, completely misunderstood but lovable, Barry. Barry’s wonderfully misguided comical bouts with stupidity drive the story and the bond that is formed between he and Tim. The misguided attempts by Barry garner much of the laughs within this duality.
I’ve never seen a movie like Dinner for Schmucks. The film is as funny as it is irritating. I am completely torn as to whether or not to recommend this film to anyone. Some of it is funny as ever but much of it needs to be burned. If you are a Steve Carell fan then you should check this out but if you’re just a casual fan of film then watch this with caution and only if you don’t have anything else that you would like to see first.