Owen Gleiberman
February 16, 2005 AT 05:00 AM EST

Son of the Mask

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
PG
runtime
86 minutes
Wide Release Date
02/18/05
performer
Jamie Kennedy, Alan Cumming
director
Lawrence Guterman
distributor
New Line Cinema
author
Lance Khazei
genre
Comedy

We gave it a C

Jim Carrey wasn’t quite a star when he made The Mask (1994), yet from the moment that he submitted to the movie’s spell, which turned him into a zoot-suited, green-faced big-daddy love machine, the real magic was Carrey’s hothouse id. He was joyful enough to dominate the special effects instead of the other way around. The genial Jamie Kennedy shows no such power in Son of the Mask. He plays a nebbish who gets turned by the mask into what might be a shellac-haired, deeply untame version of Brian Williams, complete with glorified Vanilla Ice dance moves.

Somebody stop him! Since Kennedy’s flatly ironic white-boy gyrations aren’t enough to carry the movie, everyone in sight gets a shot at masked transformation. Kennedy’s dog becomes a canine Tasmanian Devil, and his infant son, conceived during Dad’s masked night out (the baby does a disco cha-cha to ”Le Freak” while still in the womb), proves to have such powers as the ability to morph into Woody Woodpecker. The characters twirl around like mini tornadoes, but between random brash moments of technological eye-tickling, Son of the Mask sags more than it spins.

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