It’s impossible to be totally disappointed with “Dumb and Dumber To.” The sequel that was two decades in the making makes it clear in the title that it isn’t trying to creative or smart. The most it shoots for is the unwavering dumbness that fills the film.
Someone’s idea of funny writing is that the name of the movie uses “To” instead of “Two” or “Too.” The only thing that would be less funny would be leaving the Bs out of dumb and dumber.
What serves as the plot — mixed in with endless scenes of Jim Carrey mugging for the camera — is Harry’s (Jeff Daniels) efforts to find the daughter he never knew he had. He’s in dire need of a kidney, and she’s his only hope. Kathleen Turner, one of the few bright spots, sends them on their moronic mission.
This leads the pair to the family who adopted Harry’s daughter, Penny (Rachel Melvin), and a road trip to a science convention in El Paso, Texas. There’s a conspiracy plot and attempted murders, but those are little more than a way to fill the long void between anything remotely funny.
The trip to the convention is filled with sight jokes that fall flat and comedy situations that go nowhere. This is all hidden behind a never-ending wave of flatulence. This movie has earned the tag of stinker in more ways than one.
The problem isn’t the goofball characters played by Carrey and Daniels. From the first film, it’s been clear that these are two men who embrace the simplistically idiotic like a warm blanket.
It is a little sadder watching them 20 years later as the sweetness of their stupid schtick now seems more desperate and pathetic rather than funny. But this is their brainless game plan, and they stick to it.
Then there’s the witless banter such as Carrey’s Lloyd Christmas saying, “Our word is our bond, James Bond.” The joke isn’t funny the first time or all the other times it’s used.
It’s the kind of material that must have seemed miles funnier to the six people credited with writing the script — including directors Bobby and Peter Farrelly — after about five days without sleep.
The Farrellys are the most uneven directors working going from such first-rate work as “There’s Something About Mary” to the painfully awful “Hall Pass.” Their work with “Dumb and Dumber To” is less direction and more concession to just let Carrey and Daniels improvise what they think is funny — but is not.
Inane banter gives way to bodily function jokes when at a loss, and the losses are plentiful. It should be remembered he who dealt such a stinker of a film leaves us to smell its foul scent of lack of imagination and originality.
There’s a place for moronic humor. That doesn’t mean a free pass for a movie that looks for laughs by pushing people into a bush, setting off firecrackers in a hotel room, discussing how God must smoke weed and the slaughter of a roomful of birds. This kind of material needs to be smartly funny in the way movies like “Airplane” embraced the absurd and idiotic.
Instead, “Dumb and Dumber To” is nothing more than the name suggests. To that end, cast and crew have hit a miserably low mark.