My Name is Bruce (2009)
Director: Bruce Campbell
Ted Raimi/Mills Toddner / Wing
ARROW SINGS: If there's an evil Chinese god of war in your neighborhood. Who ya gonna call? BRUCE CAMPBELL!!!
BRUCE CAMPBELL has been a cherished genre icon of mine since I was a teenage Frankenstein, getting off on the EVIL DEAD movies, his awesome BRISCO COUNTY JR. TV show, MANIAC COP etc. To be honest, I always had a bit of beef with Sam Raimi for NOT giving Bruce larger roles once he made it big. COME ON SAM! Give the dude more than bit parts! In my book, Bruce should’ve been DOC OCT in
SPIDERMAN II. I said it!
So when I heard the storyline behind MY NAME IS BRUCE, I knew I had to tap it hardcore like a sailor on leave
stranded in a whorehouse with a pay check to burn. Hopefully it would be just AS GOOD as his OLD SPICE commercial or maybe even better, who knows right! With that stabbed, I can only comment on MY NAME I BRUCE from a
Bruce Campbell fan point of view, so here it goes! Although not all that it could’ve been, I still grooved to this celluloid fun-times romp. Campbell basically took the sexist, one liner dropping, class-less role of Ash in Army of Darkness and cranked it up 20 notches to play himself. Bruce’s hilarious take on Bruce is one of a womanizing, trailer trash, self centered, cowardly,
Hawaiian shirt abusing, fan dismissing and washed out B Movie star. And yes, just that alone had me
The movie itself was like me in bed; hit and miss. The pacing was easy, the gore ample enough (lopped off heads are always appreciated), the villain effective in a cheapy
B-Movie way and the wink-winks to Campbell’s legacy non-stop and chuckle inducing for the most part. If you know you’re Bruce, you’ll get WAYYYY more out of this one than a random viewer that’s for damn sure. The cast was on the ball too. Bruce owned it as we all know he could, his love interest (tackled by newcomer Grace Thorsen) was mucho adorable (dug the treasures
hidden in her top as well) while Taylor Sharpe made for a likeable and convincing
young Bruce fan. Finally, the flick was adequately shot, sported a couple of humorous side characters (like them homo rednecks) and the
cool cameo by lovely Evil Dead alumni Ellen Sandweiss hit home (She plays Cheryl, same name she had in Evil Dead BTW)
On the blank side of the canvas, well as we all know, humor is incredibly subjective and although I
smirked lots, I expected the film to be much funnier than it was. There was an edge missing, a raciness needed to bring this one to full tilt boogie level for me. Moreover, I so could’ve done without them two mooks acting as a Greek chorus with their guitars in between acts, just didn’t do it for me. Same went for Ted Raimi’s two parts too many. He was great as the slimy Agent but was too over the top for me to care as the
rambling Asian and the sign dude. Lame, them characters belonged in THE NUTTY
PROFESSOR or something - not here. Finally, I kind of felt cheated by the ending. I know, it’s a stupid horror comedy, but hey man, I was into it, buying the characters and the situation. So when the “too clever for its own good” finale kicked in
it bummed me out.. I wanted a REAL ending to this story.
On the whole though I had a decent time with MY NAME IS BRUCE. It should please
Campbell fans to varied degrees. I actually don’t see it doing much to anybody else, but being that I’m wrong 95% of the time, don’t listen to my sorry ass, just see the film for yourself and make up your own mind. Hail to the King baby!
We get some severed limbs and all kinds of chopped off heads. All good.
Bruce Campbell (Bruce) went for the gold here. His wise cracking, down in the slumps, give me some sugar baby a-hole performance had me smiling the whole way. Grace Thorsen (Kelly) was inspired casting. She looked wholesomely gorgeous and had the chops for the job. This was Taylor Sharpe’s (Jeff) first role and he aced it! Good job bra! Ted Raimi (Mills Toddner / Wing / sign dude) was on and off. I’m not a fan of overly caricatured performances. Ellen Sandweiss (Cheryl) just has an appealing aura about her. I wish her role here was bigger.
T & A
None and this is the kind of film that SHOULD’VE HAD some female flesh to TAKE HOME its M.O with gusto.
Campbell's did an admirable job behind the camera. The flick rolled on fast, had a gnarly B-movie mood to it, a couple of fly shots. I dug it!
No idea. I totally forgot. You tell me!
In my opinion and yes it is quite useless, a movie like MY NAME IS BRUCE, should’ve went for the kill in terms of out of line humor and sexual shenanigans. As-is, it felt like it held back. Thankfully it still delivered the Bruce Campbell loving in spades! Fun story, strong cast, witty jokes and Bruce on top of his game – hard to miss with that jive. All Campbell fans should seek out this puppy for sure – non Campbell fans – go rent Army of Darkness, call me in the morning and THEN tap MY NAME IS BRUCE! BOOYA!
The film was written by Mark Verheiden (Timecop, The Mask, Smallville).
A sequel called My Name is Still Bruce is in the works.
VISIT THE MY NAME IS BRUCE SITE HERE