Barry Levinson (2003)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Ben Stiller and Jack Black may be A-list comics, but they're weighed down by a lot of lead balloons in this tragically bad comedy from director Barry Levinson (Good Morning, Vietnam). Black's flair for playing egomaniacal extroverts is wasted as he's cast in the role of a Mr Nice Guy who makes a fortune selling a miracle spray that causes dog poop to vanish. Conversely, Stiller (as his so-called friend) works up a sweat trying to mine laughs from a deep dark hole of bitter jealousy. Everything about the set-up is cockeyed and each turn of the plot feels laboured. When all the clichés run out, the focus switches to Stiller's attempts to cover up the accidental murder of his friend's prize pony, giving new meaning to the phrase "flogging a dead horse". If there were a spray that could make excrement disappear, this film would require an industrial-strength formula.


The close friendship between two neighbours is destroyed when one of them stumbles on an idea for a clever invention - which quickly earns him fame and fortune. However, his old buddy is less than impressed with his sudden success, and jealously concocts a twisted scheme to bring the new millionaire back down to earth. Comedy, starring Jack Black, Ben Stiller, Rachel Weisz and Christopher Walken.

Cast & Crew

Tim Dingman Ben Stiller
Nick Vanderpark Jack Black
Debbie Dingman Rachel Weisz
Natalie Vanderpark Amy Poehler
J-Man Christopher Walken
Lula Dingman Ariel Gade
Michael Dingman Sam Lerner
Nellie Vanderpark Lily Jackson
Nathan Vanderpark Connor Matheus
Eduardo Hector Elias
Director Barry Levinson
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Columbia TriStarGuidance: Some violence, edited for some of its language. Available on: video and DVDReleased on: 10 Sep 2004