In Review: Dumb and Dumber To

by Daniel Goodwin on 17/12/2014


Twenty years is a long time to wait for a film’s first sequel, especially when there was no great yearning for one in the first place. Even though Dumb and Dumber To is far from fine art, for those with low expectations and a love for the anarchic there is still plenty of fun to be had. Jim Carrey, Jeff Daniels and The Farrelly Brothers waft away the stench from the derivative Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd (2003) to deliver a vibrant follow-up with raucous high-jinx and scattershot slapstick.

After feigning a coma for twenty years, Lloyd Christmas (Jim Carrey) reunites with Harry Dunne (Jeff Daniels) to hunt down his long, lost daughter Penny (Rachel Melvin) in the hope of convincing her to donate a kidney to her ailing father. Meanwhile, Penny’s wealthy foster parents (Laurie Holden and Steve Tom) hand over a billion dollar Macguffin to the numbskull buffoons for them to take to a science convention where Penny will deliver a speech but Harry and Lloyd’s journey is offset by assassination attempts, devious hoodlums and various madcap set pieces.

There is no denying Dumb and Dumber To is lazy and crude. Gags from the original are replayed to lesser effect while the plot devices and narrative structure are almost identical. The story careers like a sugar-fired toddler, interspersed with crazed and hilarious set pieces that are both imaginative and immature but while the similarities are plentiful, new sequences appear gaudy, vivacious and unique.

Carrey and Daniels slide back into Harry and Lloyd comfortably like a pair of well-worn Christmas socks and there is solid support from Kathleen Turner as a former beau and Rachel Melvin as her numbskull daughter (delivering the film’s finest performance). Demented gags are blasted at relentless haste and make the story feel fresh despite the facsimile structure. The frenetic energy of the plot, yarns and performances combine for a hugely enjoyable and calamitous sequel that, despite its misfires, feels as wonderfully inane and hearty as the original did two decades ago.

Daniel has awarded Dumber and Dumber To three Torches of Truth

three torches

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: