I Love You Phillip Morris Reviews
Morris, of course, is played sweetly by McGregor, as the delicate partner who just wants them to be together, and the two leads have great chemistry overall. Plus, the jokes are just cynical - or failing that, raunchy - enough to keep you laughing.
And, what I perhaps liked most about this movie, is that it talks to you as though you, too, are being conned; some viewers might not like the twist at the end, as it doesn't seem too well set up, but keep in mind: Russell is narrating this story. You didn't expect he'd tell you more than you need to know up front, now, did you? As the tagline says, and as a good con artist would tell you of his next lie: it's so incredible it has to be true. It all makes for a delightful, underrated surprise of a movie that, though it gets a little too heavy in the end, tells a fun and touching love story.
"Based On A True Story... No, Really It Is"
The story of Steven Russell and the man he loves, Phillip Morris, is one crazy fucking story. The film portrays it no differently. Sure it goes a little to the extreme with some of the homosexual content, and that surely will make hard core Republicans squirm in their chairs. But the movie is truly funny, and one of Jim Carrey's better films and performances in the last several years. He plays Steven Russell, a character of many aspects. At the beginning of the movie, he is married with a daughter and is a Texas police officer. He knows he is gay, but is just in the closet about it. Then he tells his wife, and starts his new life as a gay man, which as he describes is really expensive. So he starts running scams and becomes a conman. Soon he finds himself in prison where he meets the love of his life, and the story just gets wackier from there.
I Love You Phillip Morris has moments where it really isn't anything special, but for most of the runtime it is entertaining. Carey and McGregor are both really good and really convincing as gay men, especially McGregor. The movie isn't really laugh out loud funny all the time, but it has moments that are really funny and many other instances where it is funny, but not in a way that will make you laugh out loud. A lot of the humor I found funny kind of embarrassed me. I still find all this gay humor hilarious and this movie doesn't skimp on it. There's a lot of sexual acts humor and a fair amount of dick related jokes as well.
This movie isn't going to win any subtlety contests, but for a story like this; the movie really did need to be over the top like this, because the real man is way over the top. Surely this won't be for everyone, but if you won't be offended by the material, which I don't see why anyone should in today's world; give it a watch. If you're a Jim Carey fan, this is a welcome sight. It's something we need from him when he brings out movies like Mr. Poppers Penguins. It isn't going to touch some of his works that made him a star, but it is heads and heels above what he has been doing for the last 10 years. Well, except for Eternal Sunshine for the Spotless Mind.
Steve Russell's escape capers are quite daring and exciting - all the more so by virtue of their veracity! Jim Carrey's receding hairline and hungry-beast stare kinda make him seem predatory at first, but he gradually delivers a wonderfully warm performance. After his final escape and Phillip asks how he knows Steve won't hurt him again, I expected a tearfully schticky "You don't," but Carrey takes a moment, his gaze lowers, his face falls, silently admitting that he, himself, doesn't know, before quietly saying, "You don't." TEARS!!!
Director: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa
Summary: When upstanding Texas cop Steven Russell (Jim Carrey) realizes he's gay, he changes his entire life and pulls a series of bold con jobs that lands him in jail -- where he meets his one true love, cellmate Phillip Morris (Ewan McGregor). When Morris is transferred to another prison, lovesick Russell mounts a series of jailbreaks just to be with his beloved soul mate. Based on a true story.
My Thoughts: "I thought it would be hard for me believing McGregor and Carrey in their roles. But I'm not surprised at what a great job they did in this film. They had great chemistry together. I really enjoyed the movie and thought it was very funny. Steven Russell is an eccentric person in every shape and form. He cons and lies his way through life. He does crazy things for love which would be hard to think that someone would actually do these things, but in the opening credits it says the movie is based on a true story. So to think someone went this above and beyond for love is kind of sweet in a twisted way. Phillip Morris is very sweet and vulnerable. He is a romantic at heart and just an honest person who is the complete opposite of Russell. Jim Carrey has done serious and funny films, but this is the first film I've seen him do both. He does an amazing job playing Steven Russell. He proved in this film that he has the talent to play such complex character's. I absolutely loved Ewan McGregor in the movie. He was just so good playing Phillip Morris. I definitely recommend those of you who haven't seen it or those who aren't interested to give it a shot. It may surprise you."
The film is funny, but it's predominately a dramedy, and the humor is of the darkly satirical variety. The film is somewhat flawed, but I still liked it and think it's worth a watch.
The main issue is probably the lack of experience from the co-directors. They are making their directorial debut with this one, but they are familiar with this type of territory, having wrote Bad Santa. Even though the film is all over the place, the tone is pretty consistent, and the film is pretty sincere. Yes, there is a gay romance, but it is handled in a satisfactory way that isn't mocking or heavy handed.
The real strength of this movie lies in the performances. Jim Carrey is absolutely brilliant, and he's the perfect fit for the role of the zany delusional Russell. As his lover Phillip Morris, Ewan McGregor is also quite excellent, giving off tons of charm as the naive but loveable man swept up in Russell's schemes.
This is a bizarre, offbeat film, but there's something about it that makes it hard not to watch. We never quite know what Russell will do next, or if he will ever truly figure out who he really is, but he's such a screwy yet captivating character that we stick with him, even though it seems likely he's just going to end up breaking hearts and bank accounts over and over again.