VOD film review: Yes Man
James R | On 10, Oct 2014
Director: Peyton Reed
Cast: Jim Carrey, Zooey Deschanel, Rhys Darby
Watch Yes Man online in the UK: Amazon Prime / TalkTalk TV / Apple TV (iTunes) / Prime Video (Buy/Rent) / Rakuten TV / Google Play
“Say it a million times. Say it a million more times. And the word you will have said two million times is ‘yes’!” That’s Terrence Stamp in full ham mode as Terrence Bundling, head of a cult-like self-help movement, whose members say yes to every opportunity that comes their way. Into this way of life walks no-man Carl (Carrey), whose routine existence is about to be blitzed together with a potent portion of positivity.
Answering in the affirmative to all manner of questions, Carl’s life is transformed; he gets promoted at work (after approving lots of loans to people who can’t afford to pay them back – an unintentional touch), learns to speak Korean, and even gets off with the kooky, all-singing, all-jogging Allison (Deschanel). She’s kooky.
And so goes the by-the-numbers adaptation of Danny Wallace’s 2005 book. And for ‘adaptation’, read ‘loosely takes the premise and runs with it to American soil’. Building up to a clunkingly constructed plot point, everything Carl has soon falls to pieces. And, of course, gets put back together again in no time – same old, same old. The talented cast are the people who carry this lazily scripted effort across the finish: Zooey somehow makes her love interest more interesting than the screenplay would suggest, Carrey’s comic timing is still spot-on (from saving a suicidal man through the medium of song to falling backwards over cars), and Flight of the Concords’ Rhys Darby steals the show as Carl’s geeky co-worker, Norm – if you need a Darby fix, this is worth a hit just for him.
This formulaic outing is nothing to shout about, but it still raises several hard laughs. Yes Man? More of a maybe.
Yes Men is available to watch online in the UK on Amazon Prime Video as part of a Prime membership or a £5.99 monthly subscription.