New comedy “Identity Thief” steals laughs on big screen

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New comedy “Identity Thief” steals laughs on big screen

Guy D'Alema

Guy D'Alema

Guy D'Alema

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Over the past few months, the cinema has been void of knee-slapping, laugh-out-loud films. Most of the “comedic” movies have been sub-par, but last Friday, what could possibly be one of the funniest movies of the year was released.
On February 8 “Identity Thief” had the biggest box office opening of any 2013 movie thus far. It debuted in the box office by bringing in $35.5 million.
Director Seth Gordon picked a star filled cast, headlined by Jason Bateman, Melissa McCarthy, T.I., and Eric Stonestreet.
The movie centers around Sandy Patterson (Jason Bateman), a middle-aged man leading the typical life with a 9-5 job, two kids, a loving wife, and a baby on the way.
His life is turned upside down when Diane (Melissa McCarthy), a prosperous and talented identity thief, steals Patterson’s identity and racks up several thousand dollars on his credit cards.
Patterson risks losing his new job unless he can catch Diane and bring her back to Denver to turn her in for identity fraud. He drives down to Florida to catch her, and what follows is a completely unrealistic adventure filled with hilarity.
“Identity Thief” is rated R for language, sexual content, and violence, and it runs a little under two hours. Although this movie isn’t one to see with your parents, it’s a definitely a must-see with friends.
The film is filled with non-stop humor that keeps you laughing from start to finish, and the endless action keeps the movie from getting old or repetitive.
McCarthy does another outstanding job at playing a quirky and out-there character, not far from her role in the movie “Bridesmaids.” However, she also shows other sides when she uses her charm to steal credit cards or when she opens up and reveals the truth about her life to Patterson.
Bateman’s performance is stellar as well, much like his role in “Horrible Bosses.” His serious side only further emphasizes the crazy role McCarthy plays and together the duo creates the perfect comedic team. Bateman does an even better job at capturing that the average American may not be so average after all.
Despite its comical nature, the movie does carry an underlying message of self-struggle as well as forgiveness. The ending throws a curve-ball, which makes the movie that much better.
“Identity Thief” did earn some harsh reviews for the predictability of the movie.
LA Times movie critic Betsy Sharkey claimed that the movie was predictable and said that, ““Identity Thief” is a larcenous bit of funny business. It probably should be locked up for its crimes and misdemeanors against moviemaking.”
On the flipside, Sharkey said that the humor serves as a band-aid for the bad directing, “But its stars steal so many laughs from such improbable places that the bumps in this revenge/road trip farce can be mostly forgiven.”
“Identity Thief” may not be a cinematic piece of art, but it is a comical masterpiece and a must-see for those who want to have a good laugh.

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