With the comedy star power in Dinner For Schmucks, you’d expect to be fully satisfied from this meal. Unfortunately I’m still hungry.
Dinner For Schmucks is based off a French movie that takes a little harsher tone, but delivers the same idea. Tim (Paul Rudd) is a young professional looking to climb the corporate ladder. He is invited to a dinner hosted by his boss. The point of the dinner is for the co-workers to impress their boss by bringing the dumbest person they can find.
Barry (Steve Carell) is a losery, annoying, mouse taxidermist literally falls into Tim’s lap and his desire to advance his career trumps his morals. Tim’s girlfriend plays his moral signpost, scolding Tim for taking part. It was a very convenient point of view, but I could of just as easily seen her taking his side.
Barry is nothing less than a karmic train wreck in Tim’s life, but it allows Tim to see the world from Barry’s point of view.
It seems to me that Paul Rudd can’t appear in anything but bromance comedies these days. He’s always been an actor I’ve felt is good in small doses. This dinner was too much.
The story also lags as it gets into a lot of “how dumb can Barry be?” He creates a small taxidermy world with mice representing people having the good times he had with his wife, before she left him. That was kind of just sad. In another too-dumb instance, a girl romances and advances on Barry by suggesting she eat food off of her body. Barry declines and says “I’m sure there’s a plate around here.“ Funny, but the same joke over and over was tiring.
I really wish there was something more to come from this movie other than a bit of a letdown. There’s some great talent, but I guess even a great chef makes a boring meal some of the time.