Feb 29, 2008

[Movies] Night at the Museum

Night at the MuseumI have mixed feelings about movies involving Ben Stiller, since he has an odd habit of inconsistency and getting involved in a lot of stupid comedies. I enjoy a good comedy flick as much as the next guy, but it helps if it has a bit more gray matter involved too.

Night at the Museum, fortunately, wasn't quite one of those movies. Sure it has it's low-level humor moments, but overall it was an interesting enough piece and a great way to promote museums.

Night at the Museum follows the story of habitually unemployed and divorced father Larry Daley (Ben Stiller) who finally ends up getting a job as a night guard at the Museum of Natural History. What he discovers is that for some reason all the museum's exhibits come alive at night and Larry is left trying to keep all of the museums inhabits every night.

Now I'll have to admit this isn't the most amazing movie out there. It was clearly crafted more towards a younger audience and it certainly provides for a lot of low-level humorous moments and other instances of mild entertainment. I don't say this in an insulting manner, really, but I mean this more from the perspective of someone older who doesn't necessarily enjoy that same level of entertainment value.

There are children's movies that only really work for kids and there are children's movies that manage to cross the boundaries between genres and appeal to a wider audience. Bringing in star power like Ben Stiller, Robin Williams and Owen Wilson (albeit primarily as an uncredited cameo) usually marks an attempt to do precisely this and for this movie I don't think they were all that successful.

The story was just okay and not necessarily anything amazing. It was just solid enough to hold things together, keep things moving and provide some plausibility towards why things were the way they were but it just didn't feel all that engaging or exciting for me, really. No one can really explain why the T-Rex acts like a dog or why the museum exhibits haven't managed to kill / maim / destroy one another despite coming to life night after night after night.

It's an okay movie but probably not worth going out of your way to purchase. You can settle for catching it on HBO like I did or you can bum a friend for their DVD copy or something. If anything, at least the movie helped increase ticket sales for the Museum of Natural History.

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