Ace Ventura: Pet Detective Jr. (2009)
Directed by: David M. Evans | 93 minutes | action, comedy, adventure | Actors: Josh Flitter, Emma Lockheart, Austin Rogers, Ann Cusack, Cullen Douglas, Ralph Waite, Connor Boyle, Brian Patrick Clarke, Jim R. Coleman.
To get straight to the point: ‘Ace Ventura: Pet Detective Jr.’ is a lame movie. Bland of the worst kind there is. It’s a typical case of milking a hit movie in a bad way. This third part of the ‘Ace Ventura’ series does not focus on Ace Ventura as the public knows him (in the form of Jim Carrey), but his son: Ace Jr. (Josh Flitter). Ace Jr. grew up with his mother Melissa (Ann Cusack instead of Courteney Cox, who played Melissa in the previous two films) and never knew his father. From an early age he has a love for animals. His mother doesn’t want him to go in the same direction as his father, because she fears she will lose her son in the search for missing animals, as well as Junior’s father. But the love of animals is in his blood and when a number of ‘famous’ animals are missing in his village, he goes looking for them. When his mother becomes the prime suspect in the case of a kidnapped panda, he will of course do everything he can to prove her innocence. Together with his friends A-plus (Austin Rogers) and Laura (Emma Lockheart), they start the search for the kidnapped panda.
The way Jim Carrey portrayed his character Ace Ventura suits him. He knows how to bring the crazy faces and the bland humor in such a way that you can laugh about it and the role of Ace is therefore made for him. The junior version of Ace Ventura gets on your nerves from the very first minute. He is simply a very bad imitation of Jim Carrey, only a few years younger. It seems very done when a twelve-year-old kid makes the same jokes as Jim Carrey. This humor does not fit at all with a child of that age, which makes the whole thing incredibly fake and even irritates.
Now you can say that you have to see through the usually bland humor because this is a children’s film. The fart jokes made up to four or five times will therefore be received by children with loud laughter. But you wonder if young children even understand the other jokes in the film? This gives you the feeling that the makers of the film have not clearly determined the target group in advance, so that it has not become a fun film for both adults and children. The only part in this film that still slightly curls the corners of his mouth is Grandpa Ventura (Ralph Waite) who walks around with a dead dog on a leash that he believes is ‘just sleeping’. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective Jr. is a cringe-inducing film that will not please fans of previous films.