Junior

Year: 1994
Directed By: Ivan Reitman
Written By: Kevin Wade and Chris Conrad

RYAN’S REVIEW

Ivan Reitman has always seen the humor in taking America’s biggest action star and putting him in silly situations.  I have always thought this idea was hilarious and for the most part it worked well for him.  There is however a different school of thought when it comes to this movie specifically. I mentioned this movie at work yesterday and I was immediately greeted with the response of how awful it is.  It seems that it’s acceptable to pair America’s greatest action star in an odd couple scenario with Danny DeVito or pin him as the teacher in a Kindergartner class but the line is drawn when he gets pregnant.  I can’t really argue with that because I will agree this is a really stupid movie, but I have always found things I liked about it.

Now I will admit this movie would have never made it into our DVD collection on its own.  It was a Christmas gift one year from my sister, the “Arnold Schwarzenegger Comedy Pack” that also comes with Kindergarten Cop and TwinsThis may be the worst of that trio but it still makes me laugh. This movie was released the same year as True Lies, one of my favorite action films from Schwarzenegger.  He may have peaked as an actor this year, both in talent and success.  True Lies was an awesome film, but it seems to have all went down for him after that. Was it age that made him less effective in his role as America’s action star or was it this film? I don’t know the answer to that but this one definitely didn’t do anything for his image. I think it was a funny idea on paper but people just didn’t respond very well to it.  I happen to think this was probably his best role acting in his entire career. Although he has made really great movies during that time that this movie does not compare to.  Having gone through two pregnancies with my wife I can really see the humor in the large and intimidating Schwarzenegger having a bun in the oven.  With all the hormones and emotions that come with it.  There is one scene where he chases DeVito down the stairs pestering him about when he will be home for dinner that makes me laugh every time.  I can’t think of anything he did in his career that called for more real acting than him trying to pull off a performance as a man carrying a baby and mostly acting against his nature.  There is one scene in which he is just lying in bed crying over a touching commercial, feeling it the way a pregnant woman would.  How can anyone not see the humor in that?

Part of me thinks this movie was only made because Reitman, DeVito, and Schwarzenegger just really wanted to get back together for something.  Schwarzenegger and DeVito made a great tandem in Twins and I think they probably spent years wanting to do something else together. All they needed was a really funny idea to try to recapture the success they had with their first collaboration.  This movie really fell short of that effort but they made the effort and that counts for something, I suppose.  There has actually been some talk since Schwarzenegger’s return to acting about making a sequel to Twins with Eddie Murphy thrown in as an unlikely new brother.  I think this is a desperate attempt to get back into the game, as most of Schwarzenegger’s efforts have been since leaving office in California. As stupid as I think it is though I will probably still see it if it ever gets made.  I’m a sucker for the two of these guys working together even if it is a ridiculous idea at this point.  Both Schwarzenegger and DeVito have seen their better days and I don’t think it’s realistic to expect much more from them at this point.

I have always been a fan of Danny DeVito as both an actor and a filmmaker.  His movie Death to Smoochy is one of my favorite movies of all time despite the fact it was really poorly received by both the critics and fans alike.  I still like DeVito today but more and more now he is simply playing the part of a creepy old guy.  I think his part on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia has really gotten out of hand and I wish that he would leave the show.  It’s still a really funny show but I feel DeVito only brings sickness to the table there.  I think he is better than that and I don’t know why he has lowered himself to that level.

I have loved many of Ivan Reitman’s films and consider some of them the best comedies ever made.  Like Schwarzenegger’s career after this film though, it was all downhill for him once this one came out.  He hasn’t made a really great movie in almost twenty five years now and I don’t see any reason to expect anything significant to come from him at this point.  We will always have the films he has already given us though and those will always make him significant in film history.  No matter what; Ghostbusters will always be one of the greatest comedies of all time and that’s just to name one of his.

Is this movie worth your time? I don’t know if I really feel right telling you that it is.  I like the movie but will admit it isn’t that great.  For a while in high school this was actually my sleeper movie.  I would put it in every night as I was going to sleep and I would be out in no time.  I feel that gives the wrong impression about the movie because I do think it is funny.  So my recommendation in for this one is to use your own best judgment.  If you have gone through the nine months yourself or with a significant other I think there is plenty to laugh about in this for you.  If you are inexperienced with those nine months though I think you are taking a significant chance on it.

AMBER’S REVIEW

Junior. This movie is ridiculous. I have seen it so many times and yet I really have nothing productive to say about this movie. I think it is somewhat funny, and the contrast of Danny DeVito and Arnold is incredibly ridiculous, but it’s an okay movie. Having had two babies myself, I find it kind of stupid to make a movie around a man like Arnold getting pregnant, junior I mean, really? What am I supposed to say about this poster? Arnold Schwarzenegger is pregnant! “Nothing is inconceivable?” I really have nothing else to say about it. Even the typography is out of left field on this one. (Nice glasses, it definitely….helps….you look more paternal?)

NEXT MOVIE: Jurassic Park (1993)

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