To bring down Titans, you need power, and this weekend, the laughs brought the heavy artillery.
Steve Carell and Tina Fey are two of the funniest people in Hollywood right now, so it’s a mystery how they’ve gone so long without doing a movie together. “Date Night” is definitely a little bit “Saturday Night Live” and a little bit “Get Smart,” but Mr. and Mrs. Accidental Undercover Agent work well with their 88 minutes of screen time.
When Phil and Claire Foster (Carell and Fey) worry that their marriage may be doomed to walk the line of “great roommates,” they decide to take a chance on a hip new restaurant in the city. Sans reservation, they steal another couple’s table, only to be mistaken as the Triplehorns and get tangled in a corrupt mobster’s wicked web. When the cops are no help, they swear to figure out why they’re on the wrong side of a kill shot.
Mark Wahlberg plays an old client of Fey’s who works in security, getting stuck with the unfortunate role of shirtless confidant to the hapless couple as they piece together the evening. He’s a calming humor who balances out well between spazzy Carell and awkward Fey, also adding doses of sex appeal and jealousy to the mix.
With bit parts from the likes of Kristen Wiig, Mark Ruffalo, Mila Kunis and James Franco, it’s a wonder the screen didn’t blow up. And Ray Liotta is always a good sleazy mobster, just creepy enough while staying rom-com-y.
With the PG-13 rating, director Shawn Levy (“Shrek the Third”) really amped up the crudeness, but not so much that it takes away from the humor. Also, his action scenes are funny and not too overly action-flick inspired. In fact, I can promise you haven’t seen a chase sequence quite like this one.
What really brings the whole thing together, though, is the sincerity. All the right parts of the Fosters’ marriage are funny, and you could honestly see yourself in their shoes someday during a lot of the dialogue-based scenes.
A little bit sweet and a lot funny, “Date Night” could really play host to your next great outing… you know, minus the gunfire.