Dumb and Dumber To

Posted by Joel Copling on November 14, 2014

Allow me to spare you the mincing of words: "Dumb & Dumber," released more than twenty years ago, is one of the funniest movies this writer has ever seen. It was a combination of the charms of Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, whose chemistry as total dingbats was infectious and genuine, and a screenplay that treated the events of their road-movie as the totally asinine shenanigans they were. The result was uproarious, but the concoction didn't immediately warrant a sequel for purposes more than nostalgia, and as proof, here is "Dumb and Dumber To," which reunites, not only its stars, but also three of its screenwriters (siblings Bobby and Peter Farrelly, who also directed, and Bennett Yellin--joined this time by Sean Anders, Mike Cerrone, and John Morris).

Carrey and Daniels return to the roles of Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunne, sure, but the formula is off, however hard they try. There is a sudden mean-spirited about these two people that was less intrinsically acknowledgeable before. For instance, Lloyd has been locked up and closely monitored in a psychiatric ward for the last twenty years, but the entire thing has been a goof. He returns just as Harry informs him of the desperate need for a kidney transplant and learns of the long-lost daughter, named Penny (Rachel Melvin) and now living with adoptive parents (Steve Tom and Laurie Holden). The plan is to track Penny down at the KEN Conference in El Paso, Texas, and convince Penny to donate the kidney that her doofus father needs.

And, of course, hijinks ensue. They are amusing, these visual verbal gags (such as the fact that Harry's new roommate is involved in the production of blue-tined methamphetamine and played by an uncredited, cameoing funnyman whose identity one would never guess or the myriad references to the previous film, all of which pretty much work)--amusing, but not much else. For every two, outrageously successful jokes (The blind, bird-obsessed kid from their old apartment complex has now grown up an ornithologist of rare specimens, and one can imagine what the punchline is when Lloyd leaves Harry's cat--named Butthole for obvious reasons--in the man's apartment), there are two others that fall flat (An extended visit with a deaf, old lady comes to mind, as does the punchline of the entire movie in the final minutes). "Dumb and Dumber To" is amusing, harmless, and entirely disposable.

Film Information

Jim Carrey (Lloyd Christmas), Jeff Daniels (Harry Dunne), Rob Riggle (Travis/Capt. Lippincott), Laurie Holden (Adele), Rachel Melvin (Penny), Steve Tom (Dr. Penchelow), Don Lake (Dr. Meldmann), Patricia French ("Ms. Sourpuss"), Kathleen Turner (Fraida Felcher).

Directed by Bobby and Peter Farrelly and written by Sean Anders, Mike Cerrone, John Morris, Bennett Yellin, and Bobby and Peter Farrelly.

Rated PG-13 (crude/sexual humor, partial nudity, language, drug references).

110 minutes.

Released on November 14, 2014.