A day-dreamer escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action. When his job along with that of his co-worker are threatened, he takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined. (IMDB)
Writers: Steve Conrad, James Thurber
Director: Ben Stiller
Stars: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Jon Daly, Adam Scott
Run time/Rating: 114 Minutes/ PG
Popcorn Score: Large Popcorn with Butter
I closed out what was the longest and greatest new release movie marathon of my life last night with The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and I was delighted and surprised to realize I had saved the best for last. You can find my reviews of Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, American Hustle, Philomena, and The Wolf of Wall Street all here and here, under the Large and Large with Popcorn categories. Walter Mitty is the only one to join Philomena in the best category I have to offer.
A Ben Stiller Film (directed by and starting) that comes with a PG rating and released on Christmas Day, I was expecting more of a family affair –Night at the Museum type of movie. Especially based on the previews which show a cross genre type of film with reality and fantasy each taking place. The movie is completely suitable for a family. However, it fulfills what I can only imagine as a movie for everyone. The story is a love story, a laugh out loud comedy, a coming of age story, a tragedy, a story based in reality but also in an incredibly entertaining fantasy world.
Walter Mitty works for Life Magazine which in the current age is switching to an entirely online profile. He is a pretty lonesome, nonsocial type of guy who has never lived life the fullest the way he has wanted to. To fulfill this he typically gets lost in his own mind, basically in a zoned out mode to the real people around him, while he imagines himself flying into burning buildings to save dogs or surfing through the streets in an all our brawl with his new Transition Manager (Adam Scott) at work. Another person he daydreams about is Cheryl Melhoff (Kristen Wiig). She is a new girl at the office who Walter notices is also on the E-Harmony dating website. As they form a relationship and Walter tasks himself with an extraordinary adventure to make up for something he has believed to have done at work. The story takes on a new life and becomes the most adventurous and heartwarming tale in many years.
The best surprise for me, above the wonderful and engaging story was the amazing directorial choices by Ben Stiller. The movie shines and is so incredibly stylistic. It battles Wes Anderson films for creativity, beauty and boldness. I thought he did an incredible job and hope that he is considered for major awards this upcoming season!
You might not be motivated to head out to the theaters 5 out of 6 days as I have over the past week, but if you decide to only catch one. I would say that The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is the one to see.
Large Popcorn with Butter.