There are certain movies that you go into with a negative preconceived idea about, almost like a chip on your shoulder. You sit down thinking that a movie is going to be garbage because nothing you've seen about it gives any indication otherwise. It's the kind of movie where you almost get mad that it was even made because it's purely a money churning machine that was manufactured from assembly line type movie makers with no imagination, talent or skill put into it. I thought that about this movie but I remembered that it was made for children. So what I did was bring kids with me. I sat down with my friend's 5-year-old Ryan and 7-year-old Dani and watched Tooth Fairy starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Before the movie, Ryan even lost his first tooth not that long ago and was telling me how the tooth fairy came recently. His excitement rubbed off on me a little and I was prepared to enjoy this movie through their enthusiasm. Sometimes I hate it when my initial instinct is right. What an awful, uninspired movie. I'm not sure how The Rock has a successful career because he is one of the worst actors I've seen in a long time. The movie steals the same plot almost as Tim Allen's The Santa Clause but with less jokes, less heart and less...well, plot. I should've seen that coming since director Michael Lembeck directed The Santa Clause movies...sorry, not the good one but the other ones. Even the special FX appear as if they were thrown together as a crude afterthought. The script for this movie was originally written in 1992 and sat on the shelf at Fox all those years until it was taken down, brushed off and rewritten by five different guys clearly showing how little time anyone put into this. There is a saving grace about it though and that comes in the form of a very funny supporting cast. Julie Andrews, Billy Crystal, Seth McFarlane (Family Guy) and Stephen Merchant (BBC's The Office, Extras) save this from the pit of shame. Billy Crystal is in the movie for only one scene and in those precious 8 minutes he delivers enough laughs to almost recommend someone see it just for that. I feel bad for someone as comically brilliant as Stephen Merchant since he had to endure the entire movie as The Rock's fairy case worker, Tracy. His timing, British wit and improv talent make the movie tolerable for just that alone, but it's wasted on the kids and doesn't amuse them at all. This brings me back to my guests for the night. Only once did I hear Ryan and Dani chuckle and as I looked at them periodically during the film I saw them growing increasingly bored. By the end of the movie I felt bad that I invited them. For all I know I ruined their imaginations forever and the next time Ryan looses a tooth he'll just throw it away out of fear that someone as untalented as The Rock shows up as the tooth fairy.
Tooth Fairy (Rated PG)
Gavin Grade: D+
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