Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Love Guru: A Perfect Example Why You Should Judge A Movie For Yourself

Although I try to say I'm not influenced by what movie critics say about a movie I want to see, I'm afraid that is not really true. When I first saw the website and advertising for Mike Meyer's 'The Love Guru', I thought that it looked kind of funny. But then, all of the people that I would mention it to, would say that they thought it looked terrible, that the movie trailers didn't look funny, and that they weren't going to see it. And then the reviews from the movie critics and to say that most of them were bad would be an understatement. The reviews and the comments of other people had made me change my mind and I decided to skip this one.

Yesterday, my plans to not see this movie changed because of unplanned circumstances. One of my sisters and her husband, as well as my nephew and his wife are here in Las Vegas, visiting from Ohio. This afternoon my son and I met with them and my other sister and her husband (they are also residents of Las Vegas) at the Orleans Casino to have lunch at their buffet. As a side note, their lunch buffet, at less than nine dollars is excellent. I enjoyed it better than some of the higher priced buffets you can buy in this town. So, what does this have to do with 'The Love Guru'?

Well, after lunch our visitors wanted to gamble for a while. Since children can't hang around in the casino portions of the hotel, I decided to take my son Tyler to an afternoon matinee on the second floor of the hotel. He has already seen most of the movies that were playing. Our choices were limited to 'Kung Fu Panda', 'The Happening', and 'The Love Guru'. 'The Happening', which is rated R was definitely out. 'Kung Fu Panda' was out because the next showing was more than an hour later. That left 'The Love Guru', which my son (who one told me wisely that he wanted to see a movie no matter what the critics said because he wanted to make his own decision) said he would like to see.

So, with a little reluctance, we went to see Mike Meyer's first live action movie (hard to believe it's been that long) in six years. Surprisingly, it was a great choice and I feel like I should slap myself for being swayed by the critics.

I found myself laughing almost all the way through this movie as did Tyler. Sure, a lot of the humor was sophomoric and potty humor. And sure there was a lot of penis jokes and jokes about small people, all of those at the expense of Austin Power's Mini-Me, Vern Troyer. To say this movie is politically incorrect is an understatement. And perhaps that is why this movie was so much fun. It pulled no punches in what it did to get a laugh and made no apologies for doing so.

I won't spend my time explaining the whole story, as it was merely a backdrop for Mike Meyer's showcasing his often outrageous humor and character creations. The story deals with Mike Meyer's being the second most famous Guru in the world after Deepak Chopra, and dreaming of the day that he could be on Oprah and be number one. His chance for this to happen occurs when he is hired by the owner (an as always stunningly beautiful Jessica Alba) of the Toronto Maple Leafs. He is supposed to help their star player rejoin his wife who left him for the star of another team (Justin Timberlake in a hilarious no holds barred role as the super-endowed goalie) that they are playing in the finals for the Stanley Cup. If you want to know more, about what happens, go see it as the first weekends low box office take had more to do with what people read about it (kind of like me) rather than if they would have actually liked the movie.

And, maybe a lot of people wouldn't like it. I certainly would hope that if someone went and saw this film and didn't like it, they wouldn't say that my review was a motivator for them seeing it. Really, the whole point of this post would be that if you initially feel like seeing a movie, go see it regardless of what you see or read about it. Only you can decide whether you enjoyed it or not. And in this case, I really enjoyed it, enough to say ***1/2 out of five stars.

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