- There's Something about Mary -

There's Something about Mary

- By Bill Miller -

"There's Something about Mary" is definitely the sleeper hit of the summer.  In its eighth week of release, the R-rated Farrelly brother's film bested "Rounders" at the box-office for the week's top grossing movie.  I'd be remiss to not review it.

Peter and Bobby Farrelly, responsible for the irresponsible, albeit hilarious, movies "Dumb & Dumber" and "KingPin," have given us another outrageous, slapstick comedy.  However, their crude and tasteless comedic style will as easily offend some viewers as it will prompt uncontrollable laughing binges in others.  Though not offended, I felt that "Mary," although enjoyable, didn't quite measure up to the lofty laughter levels of "Dumb & Dumber" (a personal favorite).  I'll give "Mary" a rating of pretty-good (three and a half stars), and Mary (Miss Diaz) a 9.8.

It's 1985, and with a mouth full of braces, horrible haircut, and geeky persona, Ted Stroehmann (Ben Stiller, "Zero Effect," "Flirting With Disaster") sticks up for a mentally challenged student and, consequently, makes a favorable impression on the student's sister, Mary Jenson (Cameron Diaz, "The Mask," "My Best Friend's Wedding").  Acknowledging his selfless sense of decency, the adorably gorgeous Mary asks truly surprised Ted to their High School prom.

Arriving complete with two-tone, ruffled tuxedo, Ted excuses himself to the bathroom upon meeting Mary's parents.  Anatomical problems ensue as Ted has zipper troubles, setting the stage for the most outrageous part of the movie.  After show-and-tell with the neighbors, fire department, police, etc, an ambulance takes him away and out of Mary's life.

Fast forward to 1998 and we find Ted has outgrown his awkward youth but not his love for Mary.  On "why, not?" advice from a friend, Ted hires private detective Pat Healy (Matt Dillon, "Wild Things," "In and Out," and ex-beau of Diaz) to find the object of his affection.  As cheesy and sleazy as they come, Pat falls for Mary and puts the moves on her with his newly acquired knowledge of her personal history and tastes.  Of course he paints a most unflattering picture of Mary when reporting back to his employer.

Having to see-it-to-believe-it, Ted decides to make a road trip.  He soon finds he's one of many seeking Mary, including NFL quarterback Brett Favre.

It is at this point that the Farrelly brothers say "let the games begin!"  

Take a seat and find out who wins…

Three and a half stars.

Questions or comments?  E-mail Bill at MaxNWM@aol.com.

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