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Son of the Mask
2005 - PG - 86 Mins.
Director: Lawrence Guterman
Producer: Erica Huggins
Written By: Max Pross, Tom Gammill, Rob McKittrick, Lance Khazei
Starring: Jaime Kennedy, Alan Cumming, Bob Hoskins, Ben Stein
Review by: Joe Rickey
Official Site: www.sonofthemask.com/
   
One pities whoever happens to get lost at their local multiplex (Not as difficult to imagine these days, what with stunningly enormous 20-to-40-screen venues in which it seems to take ten minutes just to get to the theatre playing your movie) and to stumble into a theatre showing ‘The Son of the Mask.'

A useless and fruitless sequel of sorts to the Jim Carrey/Cameron Diaz film from 1994, the film stars Jaime Kennedy (‘Malibu’s Most Wanted’) as cartoonist Tim Avery, a husband who finds himself on the brink of parenthood as well as dealing with a career that is anything but flourishing (more like malnourish(ing)).

When Tim's dog brings home the titular mask, he decides to use it for an upcoming costume party, unleashing a side of himself that he has never seen before. That’s not all. An ancient god by the name of Loki (Alan Cumming, who looks more like a punk rocker than any ancient god I’ve ever seen depicted) is desperately searching for the mask to appease his father Odin (Bob Hoskins, looking ever so bored and embarrassed). When Tim’s new baby is born with the powers of the mask, as it is wont to do in films like this, all hell breaks loose.

Films like ‘Son of the Mask’ almost make you want to feel sorry for the actors except then you remember that they (assumingly) agreed to the script and willingly signed on to appear in this dreck. The film is replete with special effects that, aside from a few nifty moments, are anything but special. They make the entire film appear as if it is a low rent video game, making it dumbfounding that one hears that the reported budget for the film neared $100 million. The material that is supposed to be complemented by the effects attempts to feel fresh and exciting as director Lawrence Guterman employs Kennedy to become a constantly moving, hyperactive screen presence, spouting off one-liners at a rapid pace. The problem is that none of it works to any measurable extent. The "been there, done that" feel is throughout the film as it becomes obvious that this is just a second-rate imitation of the first film.

'Son of the Mask' definitely proves that Jaime Kennedy is not now and never will be the next Jim Carrey. His performance is all wild gestures and bombastic line-readings with no sense of purpose, and when he isn’t busy being green he is hopelessly bland, alternating between bombast and boredom. The support given by the likes of Cumming and Hoskins also plays down to the level of the material with each exerting as little effort as is humanly possible while still being able to collect a paycheck, which better have been quite large for their inexcusable appearances here.

A more apt title for this film would have been ‘The Sin of the Mask.’
 
Movie Guru Rating
A train wreck.  So bad some may find it unintentionally entertaining.
  1 out of 5 stars

 
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