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Wasn't really expecting this but this movie was a very average one, in just about every regard. It had plenty of good ideas in it and it obviously was made with the best of intentions but as a whole, the movie still falls flat.

Instead of working out as an epic, fun, adventure, which this movie so easily could have done, the movie itself is just very meh. Instead of focusing on any 'big' things the movie its story is only focusing on some very trivial and seemingly insignificant things. Still sounds cute perhaps and yes, it definitely could have worked out as such as well but it however doesn't. As a matter of fact, most of the story aspects don't work out within the movie, making this a rather shallow, simplistic and also definitely forgettable movie experience.

The main problem of the movie isn't just the story but also definitely the storytelling itself as well. For a movie that's dealing with a person who has a very vivid imagination, the movie itself is actually shockingly uncreative and unimaginative. The problem with all of the fantasy scenes is that they are just that; fantasy. It's constantly very obvious what's real and what's not within the movie and it also never manages to find a right and effective balance between the fantasy aspects and 'real life' aspects. The two different elements never feel connected strongly or naturally enough and I even have to say that most of the fantasy scenes really don't add much to the story in my opinion, while I beforehand expected this to be the most fun and interesting aspect about the movie.

Why not just simply turn this movie into a cute and heartfelt dramedy about the search for happiness and the journey of becoming a better person? The movie of course still deals with these subjects but my point is that the movie is dealing with a whole bunch of other, less interesting and thought provoking, stuff as well, which constantly gets in the way of the movie its deeper and more interesting story-elements. It's all such a shame, since the movie clearly showed plenty of potential with some of its story-elements.

It's still fair to say that this is fun movie to watch but it's lacking the emotional depth to turn this into a warm, inspirational and engaging movie as well, while this all clearly still was the movie its intention. In that regard, the movie is really a failure. It's still not a terrible one by any means but it most definitely leaves a bad aftertaste, due to its surplus of wasted potential.

It's good to note for some people that this is not just another goofy Ben Stiller comedy though. It's actually a far more subtle movie that the usual Stiller outing and also Stiller himself plays his role very straight. The movie amuses with its comedy but don't expect a laugh riot as well.

One of the things I still really was impressed with were its special effects. You wouldn't normally expect some fancy special effects in a comedy but this movie really impresses with its visuals, which often includes some fine look and subtle use of special effects.

In the long run, it's nothing but an amusing but pointless movie that's trying to do and say a lot with its story but hardly gets any of its points and messages across to its viewers.

6/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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