x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Film review: Mr Popper's Penguins

This movie about a man who learns valuable life lessons from penguins is really just another Jim Carrey film.

Mr Popper's Penguins
Director: Mark Waters
Starring: Jim Carrey, Carla Gugino
**
The elastic-limbed comedy actor Carrey teams up with some havoc-wreaking penguins in this family comedy about a high-flying estate agent whose ruthless nature has resulted in the break-up of his marriage and a shaky relationship with his father, an explorer.When his father dies, he leaves Tom Popper a penguin, which is followed by even more, until his apartment is overrun.

When his children bond with the new pets, Tom decides to keep them, meaning he must deal with his concerned employers (who think he's having a breakdown) and a zookeeper intent on stealing the penguins.

Bearing little to no resemblance to the children's book on which it is based, Mr Popper's Penguins is an inoffensive but formulaic film. The bulk of the running time is devoted to Carrey getting involved in slapstick misadventures with his feathered co-stars, with each penguin taking on a "personality" of its own.

Carrey delivers a performance similar to that in Liar, Liar, playing a cynical man whose ideals are changed by incredible circumstances.

Indeed, this familiarity only adds to the feeling that this is just another Carrey movie, likely to please younger viewers with the animal magic, but leaving anyone above the age of 12 out in the cold.