Rajeev Masand – movies that matter : from bollywood, hollywood and everywhere else

December 2, 2011

Masand’s Verdict: Safe to say no to Yes Man

Filed under: Uncategorized — Rajeev @ 7:15 am

  Cast: Jim Carrey, Zooey Deschanel
Director: Peyton Reed

In the new Hollywood comedy Yes Man, Jim Carrey stars as a sad-sack bank-loan officer who still hasn’t recovered emotionally from his divorce three years ago.

He avoids his friends, stays locked up at home most days, and isn’t particularly nice to his boss either. A chance encounter with an old friend inspires him to attend a self-help seminar where a modern-day guru convinces him he’s got to say “yes” to every opportunity if he really wants to turn around his life.

To his surprise, the just-say-yes strategy yields welcome results. For example, when he grudgingly agrees to help a homeless fellow, he lands up meeting a free-spirited young lady (played by Zooey Deschanel) who he starts a romantic relationship with.

We also see what happens when he says no – it invariably invites disaster. Like the time he turns down the sexual advances of his toothless, elderly neighbour, only to go back and give in when he learns the painful way that there really is no way out of this “yes” commitment.

Constructed around a flimsy premise, the plot of Yes Man is really a limp one – in the end, it’s a one-line concept that’s been stretched too far.

You know exactly what’s going to happen and why, and that’s never much fun. In fact I was reminded of Jim Carrey’s Liar Liar while watching this film because both have a similar concept at their core.

That film, however, was a lot more entertaining because Jim Carrey was allowed to completely loosen up and go wild. He desperately wants to lie, but a lie won’t escape his lips, it was hysterical. In this film, he’s got to say yes and he wants to say yes anyway, so where’s the fun?

Having said that, I must confess I was still very impressed by Jim Carrey’s performance in the film because it’s not one of his typically comic ones, there’s an undercurrent of sadness that he brings here, which even makes the film deep at times.

On the whole it’s not an entirely unwatchable film, but not the kind you’re likely to count among Jim Carrey’s best either.

Two out of five for Yes Man. You won’t be punished if you decide to say no to this one!

Rating: 2 / 5 (Average)

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