Today! Because the fact that my client has been ridden more than Seattle Slew is irrelevant –
Liar Liar (1997)
Directed by Tom Shadyac
Starring Jim Carrey, Maura Tierney, Cary Elwes (x2), Jennifer Tilly, Swoosie Kurtz, Randall ‘Tex’ Cobb, Cheri Oteri, Justin Cooper, Anne Haney, Jason Bernard, Amanda Donohoe, Krista Allen (x2), Christopher Mayer
So look, I know ’90s era Jim Carrey comedies aren’t really holding up. Hell, for the most part they didn’t hold up a few months after they were released. I was never the world’s biggest Ace Ventura or Dumb and Dumber fan, but yeah, I liked them in ’94. Still, one movie that is basically as funny now as it was then is Liar Liar. Sure, it has all the wacky antics typical of the man’s work, but given the conceit of the film, it somehow doesn’t feel as over the top as, say, The Mask. And while it’s not my favorite of his pure comedies (see you on July 31st!), I still really enjoy Liar Liar.
A lawyer being forced to tell the truth? Classic American comeuppance! And the script is basically wall-to-wall awkward truth jokes, which I firmly believe could’ve been pulled off by almost any competent comedian. However, couple this already generically funny concept with Carrey, at the height of his fame and just down the hill a bit from his manic zenith, and you have a perfect vehicle for what he was doing in ’97. Ah, the summer of ’97! Have we talked about this before? I feel like we did (see #376’s Men in Black). I had just graduated from high school and the Clinton impeachment was still a good year away! That was some kind of year!
We’ve got a pretty strange pair entering the Two-Timers club here – a later Cary Elwes, once he’d switched almost exclusively to playing smarmy villain types, but here only of the nerdy stepdad variety – a far cry from #395’s Robin Hood: Men in Tights – and Krista Allen, who apparently was the go-to hot girl playing hotness for laughs in this era, pairing this performance with her quick role in #368’s Anger Management.
This movie kicked off Jim Carrey’s four year run of Comedy or Musical Best Actor nominations at the Golden Globes – winning for The Truman Show and Man on the Moon – but outside of some fan voted accolades, nothing much for Liar Liar! Tough break!