Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Invention of Lying (Ricky Gervais and Matthew Robinson, 2009) Review

I've been watching and reading a lot of things to do with Karl Pilkington recently. I've been reading his books and watching An Idiot Abroad and The Ricky Gervais Show so I figured I would watch a film featuring Ricky Gervais, a cameo from Stephen Merchant and a deleted scene with Karl Pilkington. I was also intrigued by the concept of the film so lets get right into The Invention of Lying...I'm sure the film features exactly what it says on the tin.

In a world where everyone tells the truth, Mark Bellison (Ricky Gervais) is a loser who is out of money, lost his job and has a dying mother in the hospital. While closing his bank account, he manages to discover the secret to lying and winds up becoming the most powerful man with the ability to make and rewrite history. He tries to use this ability to win over Anna (Jennifer Garner), a woman he tried to date when he was a loser, but becomes famous after creating a description of life after death to appease his dying mother. 

I absolutely love the premise and concept of the film as it could lead to some great moments if done correctly...and it was....for the most part. While the film does stay true to the premise, half way through it does lose its focus to focus on social commentary of religion. While that isn't a bad thing, I just wish that they didn't retire the concept halfway through. It does lead to some down right hilarious and clever moments as Ricky Gervais has definitely put a lot of thought into the concept and it definitely shows. 

While I think that Ricky Gervais starring wasn't entirely necessary, he does bring joy to the role and, having watched his other work, he feels familiar (even if he is playing himself). The other actors do a good job but in the first third, everyone other than Mark seems lifeless and have no personality. Luckily this is fixed as the movie progresses but it is easy to detract the actor from the character. Still, the cameos from the likes of Stephen Merchant, Edward Norton and Philip Seymour Hoffman are great. 

The Invention of Lying does bring forth what is advertised and I think that a lot of thought went into the great concept. It works well and leads to some hilarious moments. The aspect that focuses on religion may definitely turn people off (hey, it's a touchy subject!) but, all in all, it's a funny feel good film that delivers in what it sets out to accomplish.

A funny film that delivers an interesting concept that clearly had a lot of thought put into it.

Also I'd say it's a good thing that we hit 40,000 page views! YEEEEAH!

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