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Joe Somebody
DVD disk
Oct 5, 2004 By: Scott Weinberg
Joe Somebody order
Director:
John Pasquin

Actors:
Tim Allen
Julie Bowen
James Belushi

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
When a white-bread middle-class schlub is bitchslapped by a bully in front of his 12-year-old daughter, he (after wallowing in shame) decides to challenge the clueless grunt to a rematch. Lots of allegedly comical martial arts training ensues.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Much like any flaccid family comedy with no spark and no energy, JOE SOMEBODY manages to showcase a few great character actorstrapped in a turgid and lifeless screenplay. I mention this first because the performances of Greg Germann, Julie Bowen, and James Belushi are the only things worth focusing on should you ever find yourself near a TV when this movie is playing. Obviously its simply a moronic move to cast Tim Allen in the leading man role of ANY production thats not a 45-second TV commercial or a Pixar film that doesnt require us to watch his pathetic mugging, but asking this guy to actually ACT is a recipe for disaster (This just in: Im not a big fan of Tim Allen.) It would have been a lot easier to dismiss this film as a mildly diverting fluff piecewere it not for the grating presence of the ever-mugging and talent-free leading man. And if youre sitting through this flick searching for the two or three mild chuckles, youre in for an experience akin to that old needle in a haystack scenario.

This movie limps along aimlessly, desperately clinging to its threadbare plot synopsis, offering very little kid-pleasing entertainment for whats clearly labeled as a family flick. I dont know of ANY kids whod happily sit through the seemingly endless collection of romantic subplot shenanigans offered here, and the movies only real satisfying gags are the sort that will fly right over the heads of any kids in the room. Plus, the movie also has one stunningly flimsy throwaway ending that will have you going Huh? all through the rewind cycle. The message of the film seems to be: threatening violence on someone is O.K. if it makes you popular with other people, but make sure theyre only EMPTY threats! JOE SOMEBODY may not be the worst sort of family flick out there, but it offers literally nothing you havent seen before. The humor level tops off around familiar and mediocre at best and the one-trick plot plods along until its inevitably safe finale. Fans of Tim Allen (you know who you are) will probably enjoy it; others need not (ever) apply.
THE EXTRAS
A surprising amount of goodies on whats essentially a limp little box-office dud. First up is a full-length audio commentary with director John Pasquin and producer Brian Reilly. Probably more entertaining than the actual feature (though only barely), this commentary is full of somewhat interesting info on what goes into a family movie like this one. Those curious to see how a few snips here and there can be the difference between a comedy and a kids flick will find some of the filmmakers discussions interesting, though to be completely honest I kept nodding off during this track, so take that as poor reviewing skills on my part or an indictment of the commentarys content. Ill just trot out that reliable old DVD reviewers mantra: If you liked the movie, youll probably enjoy the commentary track. Nuff said.

Were also offered four deleted scenes, which can be played with or without directors commentary. Im guessing this movie had a LOT more than four deleted scenes, but the ones were offered here were clearly cut for good reason. Probably the most interesting feature is the Fight Choreography featurette, which offers Allen, Belushi, Reilly, and Fight Coordinator Damon Caro discussing the martial-arts training scenes in the film. Also included is the theatrical trailer.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Id recommend this one only to Tim Allen freaks, but even then Id do it with extreme reservations since I honestly cant see whats funny about himexcept for the fact that hes famous. And thats hilarious.
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