April 13, 2010
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Finally Steve Carell and Tina Fey have teamed up! Unfortunately, the writing and directing doesn’t deserve such a grand pairing. Shawn Levy, known for Night at the Museum, doesn’t step up to the challenge of capturing these comedic geniuses. As I watched, I kept wishing Peter Berg (Hancock) or Peter Segal (Get Smart) would have taken over.
The film revolves around the Fosters, a happily married couple of two who have a weekly date night. After hearing that a fellow couple is divorcing, they decide to spice things up and move their mediocre date to NYC for a big night. What follows is mistaken identies, dirty cops, and a topless Mark Wahlberg as a black ops operative who helps them out of a jam. The film leans on Carell and Fey’s shoulders a bit too much. They can hold their own, and they do a great job playing off of each other, but the script feels like it’s caging them. If any other two actors would have taken these roles, this movie would have sucked. Carell and Fey keep it afloat, but just barely.
The strength of the film is allowing the two leads to play off each other and improvise. It makes the bumpy ride a little bit smoother. The best scenes all involve them acting like a real married couple, which they pull off swimmingly. The CGI is almost non-existent but all the visuals were believeable. If you are a fan of The Office and/or 30 Rock, you might enjoy this. It isn’t bad, but with Carell and Fey in it, I was hoping for more. 2.5 stars out of 5