Movie Review: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)

Published On January 12, 2014 » 1645 Views» By admin »

Walter Mitty 1FOREST GUMP – IT IS NOT!

3.5 stars

I decided to catch “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty”, because the marketing producer of the film actually had the incredibly huge cojones to call this movie ‘a modern day Forest Gump’. If you’re going to say that, you better be able to back it up.

Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller) is a man who escapes every day life by immersing himself in daydreams. When he and love interest’s Cheryl Melhoff (Kristen Wiig) jobs are threatened, he uses his inside spirit of adventure to go on a quest to save their jobs.

And they were seriously overstepping when they called this movie a ‘modern day Forrest Gump”. They’d be lucky to be considered a modern day Mr Magoo.

The moral of this story seems to be ‘you have to earn your beard”. Honestly, I had no idea beards were even trendy.

In The Secret Life, we are dragged through daydream sequence after daydream sequence, many times completely confused as to whether it was a daydream sequence or not. [more…]

In Forest Gump, we followed Forest on his adventures. In Mitty’s life, we learn about his adventures via a series of montages.

I will say that Stiller and Wiig has some excellent chemistry and both did what they could to try to make a bad movie good. However, even with all their skill, they couldn’t make up for a complete lack of plot line. Weirdly, I feel like the entire script was outsourced to some kid in India, who was getting paid 11 cents an hour, and who did it in a hurry just to get it done.

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Another thing that they did that drove me crazy was product placement. I hate product placement in movies, especially when it’s ridiculously obvious. The only way this could have been made worse was if they renamed this move “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty…Brought to You by eHarmony and Papa Johns”.

In short, the movie comes off as cheap and synthetic. Forest Gump was famous for its simplicity and clever plot line. The idea in Walter Mitty seemed to be ‘wait, the scene is dragging? Let’s throw in a daydream sequence to speed things up.”

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Then, at the end, instead of actually allowing us to witness the transformation, they cut out the sequences and put everything together montage style. It really felt like two underdeveloped movies sewn together.

The movie has a good heart and a good moral. It urges us all to take risks, but it does this by making us think there are no downsides to risks. We never really see Mitty struggle. We just see him win.

It was a cute movie, with a good message, but it in no way did it do justice to the book. Everything was a bit to bright and synthetic, and too many of the jokes fall flat. Stiller and Wiig did a good job of trying to pull off the characters in this overdone film, but good acting will only take you so far.

While the Secret Life of Walter Mitty is a cute film, and even an interesting film, I have to say, Forest Gump it is not.

Watch the trailer below.

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