Up­staged in sen­ti­men­tal tale

Evening Express (City Final) - The Guide - - BIG SCREEN - Da­mon Smith

sweet sen­ti­ment are eas­ier to swal­low and the chill out­side mir­rors the swathes of snow and ice on the big screen. The screen­writ­ers cer­tainly don’t help, hav­ing the tit­u­lar fa­ther de­liver a patriotic grand­stand speech about the glory of Amer­ica and its cit­i­zens that sticks in our craw. The film opens in 1976 with young, rosy-cheeked Tommy Pop­per com­mu­ni­cat­ing with his ex­plorer fa­ther in Antarc­tica us­ing a CB ra­dio and the han­dles Tip­py­toes and Bald Ea­gle. Fast for­ward to the present day and Thomas (Car­rey) has be­come a worka­holic real es­tate de­vel­oper for a mon­ey­grab­bing firm. “I love the smell of toner in the morn­ing,” grins Thomas, sniff­ing a re­port pre­pared by per­sonal as­sis­tant Pippi (Ophe­lia Lovi­bond), who point­lessly punc­tu­ates per­fectly pithy prose with a plethora of Ps. Car­rey reins in his usual mug­ging and is com­pletely up­staged by the real and dig­i­tally-ren­dered birds, who wreak havoc at a swanky party in the Guggen­heim mu­seum with its slop­ing spi­ral walk­way. Car­roll and Cot­ton tug heart­strings as the kids who want their fa­ther to choose them over his job, while Gug­ino is a slave to the con­trived nar­ra­tive. FAM­ILY WATCH: No Swearing, No Sex, Vi­o­lence.

Jim Car­rey in Mr Pop­per’s Pen­guins.

FAM­ILY FUN:

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