Fun with Dick and Jane (2005 film)

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Fun with Dick and Jane
Fun with D & J.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed byDean Parisot[1]
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story by
  • Judd Apatow
  • Nicholas Stoller
  • Gerald Gaiser
Based on
Starring
Music byTheodore Shapiro
CinematographyJerzy Zielinski
Edited byDon Zimmerman
Production
company
Distributed bySony Pictures Releasing
Release date
  • December 21, 2005 (2005-12-21)
Running time
91 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$100 million[3]
Box office$204.7 million[3]

Fun with Dick and Jane is a 2005 American comedy film directed by Dean Parisot and written by Judd Apatow and Nicholas Stoller. It stars Jim Carrey and Téa Leoni and is a remake of the 1977 film of the same name. The story focuses on a married, middle-class couple who resort to robbery when the husband's employer goes bankrupt. Alec Baldwin, Richard Jenkins, Angie Harmon, John Michael Higgins, Richard Burgi, Carlos Jacott, Gloria Garayua and Stephnie Weir also star, and James Whitmore appears in an uncredited cameo in one of his final roles. Fun with Dick and Jane was released by Sony Pictures Releasing label to Columbia Pictures on December 21, 2005 and grossed over $202 million worldwide at the box office.

Plot[edit]

In the year 2000, Dick Harper (Jim Carrey), an executive for a major media corporation called Globodyne, gets promoted to Vice President of Communications. He convinces his wife Jane (Téa Leoni) to quit her job as a travel agent to spend more time with their son, as his salary would be able to cover their expenses. On his first day on the job, however, while doing an interview on television, he learns that his CEO sold a majority of share of his stocks through shell companies, and Globodyne is accused of "perverting the American dream" by presidential candidate Ralph Nader (himself). As this happens, all of the company's stocks drop to zero, and everyone, including Dick, loses their jobs, savings, and pensions. Dick goes back to the company to confront Jack McCallister (Alec Baldwin), the CEO, but he dismisses Dick's concerns and flies away in the company's helicopter.

Dick breaks the news to the family that night over dinner, but tries to assure them that he can find another job as vice president. However, over the next few months, he finds that Globodyne's collapse has sent the overall economy into a recession, and thus left it next to impossible to find a new vice president position due to there being a large influx of other candidates. In addition, he becomes a target for ridicule because of the television interview. Even worse, Jane discovers that because their pension and all of their savings and investments were in Globodyne's now-worthless stock, they now have no assets and face possibly losing their home.

Dick and Jane then accept low paying work, but they prove unable to keep their jobs, and after having their utilities cut off, they resort to selling their personal property and taking off-the-books work to stay afloat, the latter resulting in Dick getting arrested and deported, necessitating his illegal re-entry. When the family is given a 24-hour eviction notice, Dick, tired of being screwed around after doing everything right, decides to turn to a life of crime and persuades Jane to follow him. After a few mishaps, they finally manage to rob a head shop, and with newfound confidence, they proceed to get better at armed robbery. After a few nightly robbing sprees, they become more comfortable and professional over time, and eventually manage to retire their entire debt. For one last heist, they plan to steal from a local bank. All goes as planned until the Petersons – another couple formerly employed at Globodyne – make an amateurish attempt to rob the same bank. The Petersons are quickly arrested and Dick and Jane manage to use the mass hysteria to escape the police's attention and head home, albeit empty-handed.

After watching a news report detailing the arrests of the Petersons and other former Globodyne employees who turned to similar illegal activities to make ends meet, the Harpers decide to cease their life of crime. However, Dick discovers that his failed interview with Ralph Nader has caused him to be investigated, and ultimately, indicted for his unwitting role in the company's collapse. While drinking his sorrows at a fancy millionaire's club, he stumbles upon the drunk former CFO of the company, Frank Bascombe (Richard Jenkins). When he and Jane confront Frank, the CFO remorsefully admits that McCallister had planned everything from the beginning: during Dick's interview, the CEO diverted all of Globodyne's assets and then dumped the entire stock, thus ruining the company and its employees and investors, and leaving Dick and Frank among others to take the blame, while embezzling a $400 million fortune and getting off scot-free. Frank, who is about to go to prison for 18 months after failing to expose McCallister's crimes, got a $10 million bribe from him to stay quiet.

Frank tells Dick that McCallister plans to transfer his $400 million in bearer bonds to an offshore account and creates a plan with Dick and Jane to intercept the transfer from inside the bank and substitute a fake form, transferring the funds to an account Frank has established. Things go wrong when Dick loses the form by accident, so they enter the bank to print a new form while McCallister is there making the transfer, but McCallister realizes there are incorrections on the form and spots Dick. In a final attempt, Dick holds Jack discreetly at gunpoint and demands him to sign a check, which he does. Jane tells Dick that McCallister could cancel the check at any moment, but Dick reveals that it was all a ruse to get McCallister's signature, and Jane, being an art major, can forge it.

The next day, McCallister is mobbed by reporters and former Globodyne employees, all praising him for a sudden "generosity" of his. Dick shows up as McCallister's vice president and hands him a prepared statement, which McCallister reads on live television. He is shocked to announce that he has transferred $400 million to a trust fund to support Globodyne's defunct pension plan in gratitude to his former employees and gets carried away by a cheering crowd, befuddled. A news report reveals the company's former employees (including the imprisoned Petersons) receiving their pension checks from the fund, Dick has managed to avoid indictment, and McCallister's net worth has been reduced to only $2,238.04.

A year later, Dick's family drives a Volkswagen Rabbit convertible into the sunset. While Billy (Aaron Michael Drozin) is teaching his parents Spanish, Dick's friend Garth (John Michael Higgins) approaches driving a brand new Bentley Azure, excited to reveal that he has a new job with great benefits at a company called Enron.

Cast[edit]

Background[edit]

The film is based on the novel of the same name by Gerald Gaiser which was previously filmed in 1977. Peter Tolan wrote the first draft of the screenplay. In June 2003 it was announced that Jim Carrey would star in the film with Barry Sonnenfeld directing and Brian Grazer producing.[4] On July 14, 2003 it was announced that Cameron Diaz would star opposite Carrey.[5] The same day it was also reported that the Coen brothers would rewrite the script.[6] On July 3 it was announced that Sonnenfeld had left the film six weeks before the start of production.[7] Production was postponed until after Carrey had completed his next film Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events.[8] On October it was announced that Dean Parisot would replace Sonnenfeld as director and that production would start in June 2004.[8] Judd Apatow and Nicholas Stoller worked on the script with Parisot.[8] Diaz then left the film. On July 21, 2004, it was announced that she would be replaced by Téa Leoni.[9]

Production[edit]

The film had more than two weeks of reshoots and numerous rewrites.[10] David Koepp, Ed Solomon, Ted Griffin and the team of Alec Berg, David Mandel and Jeff Schaffer all did uncredited rewrites.[11]

Reception[edit]

Critical reaction[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes, Fun With Dick and Jane has an approval rating of 28% based on 135 reviews, with an average rating of 4.9/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "This muddled comedy has a few laughs, but never sustains a consistent tone."[12] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 47 out of 100, based on 33 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[13] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale.[14]

Justin Chang of Variety positively described the film as "the rare Hollywood remake that, by daring to reinterpret its source material within a fresh political context, actually has a reason to exist".[15] Manohla Dargis of the New York Times commented that "... the film never settles into a groove, zigging and zagging from belly laughs to pathos ..."[16] Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote: "Recycles the 1977 comedy right down to repeating the same mistakes." Ebert was critical of the film's unexplored opportunities and wrote that it instead turns to "tired slapstick". He suggested viewers might watch The New Age instead.[17]

Box office[edit]

After a disappointing opening weekend of $14,383,515, the film played in theaters throughout the holiday season, making nearly eight times its opening weekend gross.[citation needed] It eventually earned $110,332,737 at the domestic box office, and $91,693,375 in international receipts, for a total, worldwide revenue of $202,026,112, against a production budget of $100 million.[3] It is one of twenty feature films to be released in over 3,000 theaters and improve on its box office performance in its second weekend, increasing 14.9% from $14,383,515 to $16,522,532.[18] The high earnings despite the criticism were partially attributed to the scheduled trial of Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling, and the film credited corporate scandals for inspiration.[19][20]

Soundtrack[edit]

The score by Theodore Shapiro written for the film was released on January 24, 2006.[21]

Fun with Dick and Jane [Soundtrack]
Soundtrack album by
Theodore Shapiro
ReleasedJanuary 24, 2006
LabelVarèse Sarabande
Track listing
No.TitleLength
1."Ameribank Robbery" 
2."Job Calls" 
3."Office Chaos" 
4."Black Jack" 
5."Main Title" 
6."51st Floor" 
7."Jane Quits" 
8."Quad Slide" 
9."Race For The Job" 
10."I.N.S." 
11."Illegal Immigration" 
12."Sleeping Beauty" 
13."Got The Yard Back" 
14."The Insects Are All Around Us" (Performed by Money Mark) 
15."Need A Good Wheelman" 
16."Escape From The Headshop" 
17."Bank Plan" 
18."Grand Cayman Bank" 
19."The Big Stall" 
20."Gun Pull" 
21."Starbucks Hit" 
22."400 Million Dollars" 
23."End Credits" 

Other songs[edit]

The following songs are featured in the film, but are not included on the soundtrack:

  1. "I Believe I Can Fly" - R. Kelly
  2. "Smooth Operator" - Sade
  3. "Right Place Wrong Time" - Dr. John
  4. "What I Got" - Sublime
  5. "Sandstorm" - Darude
  6. "Why Me Lord" - Johnny Cash
  7. "Wedding" - Randy Newman
  8. "Time Bomb" - Rancid
  9. "Uncontrollable Urge" - Devo
  10. "Insane in the Brain" - Cypress Hill
  11. "Alive & Amplified" - The Mooney Suzuki
  12. "The Best Things in Life Are Free" - Sam Cooke

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Fun With Dick And Jane (2005)".
  2. ^ a b "Frequently Asked Questions". Jim Carrey Online. Retrieved February 18, 2009.
  3. ^ a b c "Fun with Dick and Jane (2005)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved September 12, 2016.
  4. ^ Brian B. (June 4, 2003). "Carrey is having FUN WITH DICK AND JANE". movieweb.com. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  5. ^ "Cameron Diaz to star with Jim Carrey". upi.com. July 14, 2003. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  6. ^ Susman, Gary (July 14, 2003). "Coen Bros. will write for Cameron Diaz and Jim Carrey". ew.com. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  7. ^ "Sonnenfeld leaves 'Dick and Jane'". upi.com. July 3, 2003. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  8. ^ a b c Fleming, Michael (October 2003). "Parisot set for 'Fun' pic with Carrey". variety.com. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  9. ^ LaPorte, Nicole (21 July 2004). "See 'Jane' run with Leoni". variety.com. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  10. ^ Welkos, Robert W. (4 December 2005). "Angst with Dick and Jane". latimes.com. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  11. ^ Horn, John & Abramowitz,Rachel (4 December 2005). "Credit ascribed, denied". latimes.com. Retrieved 29 May 2016.
  12. ^ "Fun With Dick and Jane (2005)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved January 13, 2016.
  13. ^ "Fun with Dick and Jane". Metacritic.
  14. ^ "Cinemascore". CinemaScore. Archived from the original on 2018-12-20. Retrieved 2019-08-30.
  15. ^ Chang, Justin. "Fun with Dick and Jane".
  16. ^ Dargis, Manohla. "Fun With Dick and Jane (2005) review".
  17. ^ Ebert, Roger (December 20, 2005). "Fun with Dick and Jane Movie Review (2005)". Chicago Sun-Times.
  18. ^ "Smallest Second Weekend Drops". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved March 27, 2014.
  19. ^ Rabin, Nathan (21 December 2005). "Fun With Dick And Jane". AVclub Film. Archived from the original on 3 November 2019. Dick And Jane's credits thank a rogue's gallery of corporate-scandal all-stars like Enron's Kenneth Lay for inspiration
  20. ^ Nocera, Joe (28 January 2006). "A Revenge Fantasy, Except It's Reality". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 28 May 2020. the movie is an Enron revenge fantasy. Which helps explain, I think, why this decidedly mediocre film has made more than $100 million at the box office so far.
  21. ^ "Fun with Dick and Jane [Soundtrack]". Amazon.

External links[edit]