Incredible Carell: If Michael Scott were a magician
by Richard Roeper
Welcome back, Hilarious Jim Carrey. We've missed you.
In The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, a predictable but often terrific absurdist comedy, Carrey plays Steve Gray, a long-haired, tattoo-spangled, masochistic performance artist/illusionist from the Criss Angel/David Blaine school. Forget about walking on hot coals; this guy sleeps overnight on hot coals and asks for a wake-up call.
The Incredible Burt Wonderstone is a Will Ferrell sports comedy without Will Ferrell and without the sports. In plot and tone, in a screenplay recipe that's two parts lunatic comedy and one part shameless sentimentality with a dash of romance thrown in, this magic-themed buddy movie isn't so different from Blades of Glory or Kicking & Screaming or Semi-Pro or Talladega Nights. (And gosh, Will Ferrell's made a lot of sports comedies, hasn't he?)
Burt Wonderstone (Steve Carell) is a pompous, clueless, sexist blowhard who somehow comes across as at least somewhat sympathetic, perhaps because we've seen the abuse and the hard knocks he endured as a child. It's as if Michael Scott from The Office had actually pursued his lifelong love of magic and had managed to become a successful albeit old-fashioned and cheesy act headlining his own theater at Bally's in Las Vegas.
Anton (Steve Buscemi), Burt's childhood friend, gamely joins his pal onstage each night...(READ FULL REVIEW)