There's Something About Mary
|There's Something About Mary|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Peter Farrelly
|Produced by||Michael Steinberg
Charles B. Wessler
|Screenplay by||Ed Decter
John J. Strauss
|Story by||Ed Decter
John J. Strauss
W. Earl Brown
|Narrated by||Jonathan Richman|
|Music by||Jonathan Richman|
|Edited by||Christopher Greenbury|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
There's Something About Mary is a 1998 comedy film, directed by the Farrelly brothers, Bobby and Peter. It stars Cameron Diaz, Matt Dillon and Ben Stiller, and it is a combination of romantic comedy and gross-out film.
The film was placed 27th in the American Film Institute's 100 Years, 100 Laughs: America's Funniest Movies, a list of the 100 funniest movies of the 20th century. In 2000, readers of Total Film magazine voted it the fourth-greatest comedy film of all time. Diaz won a New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actress, an MTV Movie Award for Best Performance, an American Comedy Award for Best Actress, a Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Best Actress. She also received a Golden Globe nomination for her performance.
In 1985, awkward and shy 16-year-old high-schooler Ted Stroehmann (Ben Stiller) lands a prom date with his dream girl Mary Jensen (Cameron Diaz), only to have it cut short by a painful and embarrassing zipper accident. After the ordeal garners the attention of numerous members of the household and community, Ted is finally carted off to a hospital, subsequently losing contact with Mary.
Thirteen years later, Ted is still in love — maybe even obsessed — with Mary. On the advice of his best friend Dom (Chris Elliott), he hires a private detective named Pat Healy (Matt Dillon) to track her down. Healy finds that she is an orthopedic surgeon living in Miami with her friend, Magda, only to end up falling in love with the irresistible Mary as well. He lies to Ted about Mary, saying she is grossly overweight with multiple children, to discourage him from making contact with her. Healy resorts to lying, cheating, stalking, and even drugging Magda's dog to win Mary but is exposed by Mary's architect friend, Tucker (Lee Evans), who is heavily reliant on crutches and speaks with an English accent. Tucker, whose real name is revealed to be Norm, however, turns out to be a fraud himself, as he is an able-bodied, and entirely American citizen, pizza delivery boy who is also in love with Mary. Using slander, Tucker AKA Norm drives away potential rivals, among them NFL quarterback Brett Favre, playing himself.
Ted, aided by Dom, drives down to Florida to reconnect with Mary. Ted seems to have won Mary's love, until an anonymous letter exposes his being less than honest about his link to Healy. While Ted confronts Healy and Tucker, Mary is confronted by Dom, who turns out to be her former boyfriend Woogie, who "got weird on her" back in high school, stealing all her shoes. Having found out that Tucker also lied about Mary's former love interest, football player Brett Favre, Ted decides that Mary should be with Brett (who was the only one of the suitors who did not resort to deceit to win Mary). After reuniting Brett and Mary, Ted leaves tearfully. But Mary chases after Ted, saying that she would be happiest with him.
The film concludes with the two engaging in a kiss while a guitarist (Jonathan Richman), who periodically narrated the story in song throughout the film, is accidentally shot by Magda's boyfriend, who was trying to shoot Ted so he could win over Mary.
- Cameron Diaz as Mary Jensen/Matthews, an orthopedic surgeon with whom Ted has been in love since high school.
- Ben Stiller as Ted Stroehmann, an awkward and shy young man who meets Mary in high school and, of all the men fighting over her, is the only one who seems to be truly in love with her.
- Matt Dillon as Pat Healy, a sleazy private detective whom Ted hires to track Mary down, only to fall in love with her himself.
- Chris Elliott as Dom “Woogie” Woganowski, Ted's best friend, who has a fetish for women's shoes and a problem with hives.
- Lee Evans as Tucker/Norm Phipps, a Pompano pizza delivery boy who falls in love with Mary and pretends to be a British architect in order to impress her.
- Lin Shaye as Mary's older roommate Magda
- Jeffrey Tambor as Sully
- Markie Post as Sheila Jensen, Mary's mother
- Keith David as Charlie, Mary's stepfather
- W. Earl Brown as Warren Jensen, Mary's mentally disabled brother
- Sarah Silverman as Brenda, Mary's sarcastic and obnoxious best friend
- Khandi Alexander as Joanie
- Willie Garson as Dr. Zit Face/high school pal Bob
- Brett Favre as himself, Mary's former love interest. The role was originally written-for and offered to NFL quarterback Steve Young, but he turned the role down due to the film's coarse nature and was replaced with Favre.
- Richard Tyson as Detective Krevoy
- Rob Moran as Detective Stabler
- Jonathan Richman as the singing narrator
- Harland Williams (uncredited) as Hitchhiker
- Richard Jenkins (uncredited) as Psychiatrist
This sleeper hit was the highest-grossing comedy of 1998 in North America as well as the fourth-highest-grossing film of the year. It also catapulted Diaz and Stiller into the limelight. The film made $369 million worldwide, including $176 million in the U.S. alone.
The film was generally critically acclaimed. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a score of 83% based on 83 reviews, and an average rating of 7/10, with the consensus: "There's Something About Mary proves that unrelentingly, unabashedly puerile humor doesn't necessarily come at the expense of a film's heart." Metacritic gives the film a score of 69 out of 100 based on reviews from 29 critics.
Roger Ebert gave it three out of four stars, stating "What a blessed relief is laughter. It flies in the face of manners, values, political correctness and decorum. It exposes us for what we are, the only animal with a sense of humor."
Gene Siskel ranked the film No.9 on his 10 Best films of 1998 (the final "best of" list he did before passing way).
- "There's Something About Mary" (Jonathan Richman) – 1:47
- "How to Survive a Broken Heart" (Ben Lee) – 2:47
- "Every Day Should Be a Holiday" (The Dandy Warhols) – 4:02
- "Everything Shines" (The Push Stars) – 2:27
- "This Is the Day" (Ivy) – 3:33
- "Is She Really Going Out with Him?" (Joe Jackson) – 3:36
- "True Love Is Not Nice" (Jonathan Richman) – 2:13
- "History Repeating" (The Propellerheads feat. Shirley Bassey) – 4:04
- "If I Could Talk I'd Tell You" (The Lemonheads) – 2:51
- "Mary's Prayer" (Danny Wilson) – 3:54
- "Margo's Waltz" (Lloyd Cole) – 4:01
- "Speed Queen" (Zuba) – 3:44
- "Let Her Go Into the Darkness" (Jonathan Richman) – 1:19
- "Build Me Up Buttercup" (The Foundations) – 2:59
- "THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY (15)". British Board of Film Classification. 1998-07-22. Retrieved 2012-01-02.
- There's Something About Mary at Box Office Mojo
- "Don’t Forget: ‘There’s Something About Mary’". Yahoo.com. February 23, 2011.
- Locke, Greg W. (26 August 2011). "The Top 25 Roles Bill Murray Didn’t Take". Retrieved 25 May 2015.
- Evans, Bradford (17 February 2011). "The Lost Roles of Bill Murray". Retrieved 25 May 2015.
- "There's Something About Mary". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved 2010-03-23.
- "There's Something About Mary". Metacritic. CBS.
- Roger Ebert. "There's Something About Mary". Chicago Sun-Times.
- "There's Something about Mary Soundtrack". Soundtrackinfo.com. 1998-07-14. Retrieved 2013-01-15.
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- There's Something About Mary at the Internet Movie Database
- There's Something About Mary at the TCM Movie Database
- There's Something About Mary at AllMovie
- There's Something About Mary at Box Office Mojo
- There's Something About Mary at Rotten Tomatoes
- There's Something About Mary at Metacritic