We gave it a C
How do you top that image of a (sorry, grandma) spunky Cameron Diaz burned into our brains by There’s Something About Mary? If you’re the Farrelly brothers, you pull a Time Code and shoot an unfinished script in one take. That’s the feeling one gets from Me, Myself & Irene, a film no one would fault for being chintzy and dull-witted if it weren’t so lethargically self-satisfied.
Eerily meek lawman Charlie (Jim Carrey) gets cuckolded by a black midget, develops a thuggish alter ego named Hank (imagine Ace Ventura impersonating Clint Eastwood — poorly), and dukes it out with himself for the love of Irene (a too-prim Renee Zellweger) — all against the backdrop of a sinister EPA plot. Follow? Don’t bother. The point is, somebody gets a chicken up the wazoo.
Barnyard sodomy aside, the Airplane!-era racial conceit (Charlie’s bastard sons are jive-talking geniuses! Golly!) deserves catcalls from the NAACP and the Writers Guild, simply because the gag is so gracelessly flogged for guilty laughs. Kinda makes you miss the days when zipper mishaps were uproarious, and nobody (except Ben Stiller) got hurt. C
WHAT WE SAID THEN: ”…shifts unsteadily between slow-moving, gauzy-focus romance and ‘transgressive’ gross-out comedy.” B- (#547/8, June 30/July 7, 2000) — Lisa Schwarzbaum
Me, Myself & Irene 2000 FOX 116 MINUTES RATED R ALSO ON DVD