“How can I say something if I don’t feel it?” asks Chuck (Dane Cook) in reference to love, a tell-the-truth sentiment to which I must adhere. So here goes: Dane Cook is not funny. Not at all. Not ever. If I had a choice between suffering through a Dane Cook film or the outtakes from Carrot Top’s Chairman of the Board, I’d go with the latter. Any day of the week. Nonetheless, here’s Good Luck Chuck, a vehicle for the inexplicably popular Cook—whose stand-up routines lack insight and punchlines, and whose cinematic presence is somewhere between bland and blander—in which his dentist character finds his romance with a clumsy penguin expert, Cam (Jessica Alba), complicated by his reputation: that any woman he sleeps with will find Mr. Right soon after. He’s a single woman “lucky charm,” though given that Cook is less amusing than the cereal box leprechaun, this setup’s already miniscule potential for comedy dies a quick death. Fortunately, there’s the sight of Alba in her underwear, as well as countless topless women (during a Chuck-enjoying-his-status montage) and a mutant hottie modeled after Total Recall‘s famous hooker, to help distract from the across-the-board lameness on display. Yet even those base pleasures are mere fleeting rays of sunlight in the vast, cavernous black hole of humor that is Good Luck Chuck, a film so astoundingly hackneyed in every way—from its immature protagonist, to Dan Fogler’s super-profane sidekick, to its mockery of Asians and fat people, to its ‘80s sequence, to its derogatory use of the word “gay,” to its crotch shots and pratfalls and cheesy pop songs—that the entire thing feels as if it had been written by a computer program. And a retarded one at that.
- Mark Helfrich
- Josh Stolberg
- Dane Cook, Jessica Alba, Dan Fogler, Michelle Harrison, Ellia English
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