Main cast: Jim Carrey (Bruce Nolan), Morgan Freeman (God), Jennifer Aniston (Grace Connelly), Philip Baker Hall (Jack Keller), Catherine Bell (Susan Ortega), Lisa Ann Walter (Debbie), and Steven Carell (Evan Baxter)
Director: Tom Shadyac
While I am busying trying to fend off Bruce Almighty from slapping me non-stop in the face with how moronic it is, I wonder why Hollywood movies and TV shows often cast an African-American (usually the only African-American) in the role of the asexual authority figure – the high school principal, the judge, the Army colonel or general (depending on the rank of the hero), or in this case, even God. Is it a token concession to political correctness or what? It will be interesting to dwell into the psyche of LA’s casting directors one of these days.
Anyway, about this horrible movie, it starts off like a dumb joke hour only to plunge into a later half of pure unadulterated stupid sentimental moments. Our hero Bruce Nolan is a news presenter/TV personality more well-known for his goofy antics rather than substance in his work. He is rude to people. He comes late to meetings. But he insists that there is a “Bruce ceiling” that prevents him from getting promoted. Apparently nowadays people are entitled to advance in life without working for it. When he is passed over for a snotty co-worker for the position of a news talkshow presenter, he really rips into his long-suffering and no doubt insane girlfriend Grace (who has to be insane to put up with this loser) and then wails that God is dumping on him.
Voila, so God summons him, grants him godly powers, and goes on a vacation. Because God doesn’t care. And Bruce Almighty uses his divine powers to lift up passing women’s skirts, makes Grace’s breasts bigger, teaches his dog to read the newspapers, pulls the moon closer to Earth, and generally behaves like a curiosity-free, creativity-free idiot who deserves to remain down in the social food chain because he is an idiot. From his pulling the moon closer to Earth to mass-answering “Yes!” to people’s prayers via email, it is indeed a divine miracle that Bruce hasn’t destroyed the Earth completely in one day.
Then, after it’s done milking the premise of Bruce’s deitification into the God of Neanderthal Morons dry, it begins to preach about duty and responsibility in a laughably heavy-handed manner. It’s insulting and even hypocritical – this movie expects me to laugh at the whole nonsense Bruce does even as I’m supposed to automatically repent and condemn Bruce’s actions when the film says so.
Jennifer Aniston is wasted (her acting – I’m not talking about her weight, just to make this clear), Jim Carrey is hugely annoying, and I hope Morgan Freeman buys some nice shoes with his paycheck. Bruce Almighty is an insulting stinker. Let there be light, let there be no more movies from Tom Shadyac.