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Friday, October 31, 2014 
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  Envy cinematronic
  director

Barry Levinson

cast

Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Rachel Weisz, Amy Poehler, Christopher Walken

year

2004

rating rating cinematronic
  The talent that came on board the desperate-to-be-outrageous comedy "Envy" is so promising. Fine-whiner Ben Stiller ("Meet the Parents") and manic force-of-nature Jack Black ("School of Rock") co-star as suburban neighbors/friends/co-workers put at odds by envy. Scrumptious Rachel Weisz ("About a Boy") and adorably antic Amy Poehler ("Saturday Night Live") play their wives, Christopher Walken ("Catch Me If You Can") is one of his loose-cannon wackos, and the director is Barry Levinson, whose features include the first-rate "Diner," "Rain Man," and "Wag the Dog." But the results will be the envy of no one. It ain't funny. To indicate how deep the above-named worthies sink, the plot of "Envy" is built around the invention of an aerosol spray that makes dog droppings instantly disappear. Zow! It's turd jokes galore. Nick (Black) comes up with the poo-be-gone item, making him obnoxiously wealthy to the disbelief and anguish of pal Tim (Stiller), who didn't believe in the idea and refused to invest in it. The production aims for the gross-out humor of a hit-and-miss Farrelly Brothers film, but the chuckle-free "Envy" is mostly miss-and-miss. It only merits watching to see Stiller and Black in a comedy so flat even they can't save it. Maybe the amusing parts inexplicably vanished like the film's sprayed dog poop.  
cinematronic
cinematronic


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