Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Movie Review: Mr. Popper’s Penguin

Jim Carrey is certainly one of my favorite Hollywood personalities because he never fails to reinvent himself. He started out sky-rocketing his career in the big screen with his one-of-a kind loony antics before shifting to playing several laid-back and serious characters. Because of his transition, for a while, many thought his comical genius ideas have grown thin. He then slowly inched his way out from that short period of hibernation and metamorphosized into another new look giving his avid fans another fresh Jim Carrey entertainment perspective.

I’m glad he went through that kind of slow transformation --- from being known for dim-flexi-slapstick-manic antic comedy to playing mature and sometimes lucid comical characters. Perhaps his body and facial morphing can only go so far, especially for somebody who is almost 50. Nevertheless, he has proven over time that he can take on ordinary characters like a lawyer, a salesman, or a newscaster and remain humorously entertaining.

Last week I had fun time watching Mr. Popper’s Penguins which is based on a 1930’s children’s book by Richard and Florence Atwater. In the movie, as much as a lot of things were changed to fit the modern context, the plot was pretty much generally the same as the book. Carrey’s character, Tom Popper, represents the typical business sales rookie who wanted to prove his worth among his company’s bigwig partners. Facing a life of anxiety from a divorce, Popper tries his best to juggle his life trying to be an ideal father to his two kids and clinching business deals to get him to the top his career.

In the midst of his busy life, he was suddenly confronted with an inheritance -- six penguins from his long lost dad who has passed away. Faced with a major dilemma that adds another obstacle to his already chaotic business career and personal life, he then later realized that the problem he wanted to get rid of so badly became the vehicle to the solution to his misery.

This vintage story, found in children books for decades, is now resurrected in a fun-filled movie that is glazed by Jim Carrey’s comic wonders and bundled with a winter wonderland theme in a kind of National Geographic sort of way. It’s something that’s great to watch with the whole family.
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