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60 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the funniest movie of the year
This is one of the funniest movies I've seen in some time. Bruce Almighty starts Jim Carrey, Jennifer Aniston, and Morgan Freeman. The basic premise is this is a comedy about one man who is given the powers (and responsibilities) of God and we get to see what he does with this power. Knowing that the movie stars Jim Carrey we expect quite a bit of over the top humor...
Published on July 9, 2003 by Joe Sherry

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars Warning: UNINTERRUPTIBLE! Advertising ahead
I LOVE this movie, it is warm, funny, and only the least bit irreverent... but I HATE the DVD. Why?
You are FORCED to view about 10 minutes of "previews". That's right folks, not only do you get to read the FBI warning, but you also get nearly 10 minutes of UNINTERRUPTIBLE previews! Stop won't work, select another chapter is prohibitted - at least on my...
Published on December 8, 2003 by Mr. Amusing


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60 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the funniest movie of the year, July 9, 2003
By 
This is one of the funniest movies I've seen in some time. Bruce Almighty starts Jim Carrey, Jennifer Aniston, and Morgan Freeman. The basic premise is this is a comedy about one man who is given the powers (and responsibilities) of God and we get to see what he does with this power. Knowing that the movie stars Jim Carrey we expect quite a bit of over the top humor. While we do have a fair amount of the typical Carrey humor, Bruce Almighty is a lot more than that.
Bruce Nolan (Jim Carrey) is a reporter for a local television station. He gets the assignments that show off his warm and humorous side. But Bruce wants the anchor position that will be opening up when the current male anchor retires. Bruce does not feel that he is getting the respect or the opportunities necessary for him to be able to get the job he has always wanted.
Bruce is living with his girlfriend Grace Connelly (Jennifer Aniston), an elementary school teacher. When Bruce loses his job (have a nice Jim Carrey fit) he blames everyone and everything including God for his mediocre life. Grace sees that Bruce is also calling their relationship mediocre and is now upset with Bruce. Bruce blames God some more, asks for a sign (he gets several, which he promptly ignores) until finally he realizes that there is something going on and actually meets God (Morgan Freeman). God is tired of listening to Bruce whine so much so he tells Bruce that if he thinks he can do a better job at running the world, then perhaps Bruce should try. God endows Bruce with the divine power and lets Bruce have a go at it.
Bruce does what most of us would do with the power of God. He plays around with it for his own convenience, messes with the people who he doesn't like and uses it to help out his sex life with his girlfriend. His use of power is very funny, but it appears that he is not happy with life. Finally, Grace leaves him because even though Bruce is improving his life he has not changed who he is or how he acts to other people.
The movie changes gears and turns into a film about Bruce's redemption with God and with Grace. The film presents a positive message about God and faith that does not feel heavy handed at all (the director happens to be Christian). I thought this was a fairly well thought out and incredibly funny movie. It is the funniest movie thus far this year and I would definitely recommend it.
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57 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny and moving, July 1, 2003
Bruce Nolan (Jim Carrey) is a local TV news reporter in Brooklyn, NY who is constantly sent out on the least desirable assignments and made into the "funny" guy instead of the serious person he wants to be perceived as.
His goal is finally sit in the anchor's chair and be taken seriously as a news personality. He is so goal oriented, it causes strife with his girlfriend Grace (played wonderfully by Jennifer Aniston). Nothing seems to go right for him. His dog eliminates in the house, his car gets demolished, he gets embarrased on TV and continues to butt his head against the wall.
Grace is a school teacher that has a special bond with her students. She is spiritual and loving, and cares deeply for Bruce, warts and all. Bruce only sees his goal and as the world crashes around him, he blames God for his troubles.
In a scene reminiscent of "Oh, God!" (starring George Burns and John Denver), Bruce goes to an unusal, nondescript building to talk about a job offer. Little does he know that it's God (Morgan Freeman) who has contacted him and who offers Bruce the opportunity to have God's power so he can try to prove he can do a better job than God.
Needless to say, giving Jim Carrey omnipotent powers is a recipe for non-stop laughter. A number of the funny scenes have already been shown in the trailers, but there are many more. Beyond the humor, however, there is a much more powerful story going on - in Bruce's heart.
While he has the power of God, he doesn't have the knowledge or wisdom of the Almighty. He finds himself deluged with prayers still overwhelmed with pressures of the world. He uses his new powers for selfish things, and when he finally is moved to do something for others, he does a half-hearted job at it.
Despite his powers, he still finds himself going nowhere - nothing works out the way it should. He can manipulate people and things, but he does not have the power to interfere with a person's free will. Free will is the only thing we have when we're born and the only thing we take with us when we leave - but despite being told not to interfere in free will, Bruce tries at it anyway.
After nearly 2 weeks with omnipotent powers, God confronts Bruce - asking what good things he has done for other people, or what things has he done at all that were good. As his life continues to unravel, Bruce realizes what God was trying to tell him subtly all along.
This is not just a film about the funny situations one can get into with almighty powers - the story is more about the individual relationship each person chooses to have with God... and how to look at yourself before pointing out the problems in others.
There is some foul language in the film, but it is minimal and not anything beyond what is seen on prime-time TV these days. The film is very entertaining, but also very deep. It's hard to watch this film and not have at least a moment of looking at yourself in a different way - and more importantly, looking at the people around you and trying to see them as God sees them instead of in the selfish way we usually look at others.
In many ways, this is a timeless movie - almost an instant classic... and one of the few blockbusters in recent years that it's safe to take your family to watch.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Warning: UNINTERRUPTIBLE! Advertising ahead, December 8, 2003
By 
I LOVE this movie, it is warm, funny, and only the least bit irreverent... but I HATE the DVD. Why?
You are FORCED to view about 10 minutes of "previews". That's right folks, not only do you get to read the FBI warning, but you also get nearly 10 minutes of UNINTERRUPTIBLE previews! Stop won't work, select another chapter is prohibitted - at least on my recent vintage progressive scan Panasonic DVD player.
Someone needs to be taken out the the woodshed!
Note without this annoying feature, the movie would get 5 stars from me. With the unwelcome previews... well, you can pop the corn, teach your dog to flush the toilet, and brew a pot of coffee before you'll be able to start watching what you actually paid for!
BONUS FEATURES!
Of interest are the "bonus features" including scads of deleted scenes and outtakes. For example, there is one scene (shown on TV ads) where the conniving news anchor can't seem to say anything intelligible. It is side splitting funny! Fortunately what is left in the movie is *tastefully* mean. The alternative you find in the deleted scenes involves nasty bodily mayhem to the poor S.O.B. The treatment is so mean spirited it makes Bruce's character disgusting, not amusing.
In this case, I give two thumbs up to the editors for choosing the high road. Some other scenes are similarly justly removed. And a few even give you some insights into things that might not otherwise make sense. If you've seen the movie you may recall a big party scene in a large mansion. One of the coffee tables is covered about a foot deep in shrimp. In the deleted scenes, you learn why!
Yeah, the editors did a good job - but the numbnuts who wrote the DVD script... they deserve massive nosebleeds and flaming hairdos.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good DVD ruined by advertisements, December 30, 2003
By 
Robert Auld (New York, NY United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
"Bruce Almighty" is another fine effort by Jim Carrey. Anyone who enjoys his work will enjoy this movie. Unfortunately, the DVD edition starts with four minutes of movie trailers. Unlike other DVD's, this one locks out the controls on your player so that you HAVE to watch the trailers before accessing anything else on the disc. You cannot even stop the disc from playing once the trailers start, except by ejecting it. AND, this happens every time you load the disc.
This is unacceptable, especially in a medium that normally allows the viewer such varied control over how a movie is presented on their screen. Because of this bone-headed decision by the DVD makers, I cannot recommend you purchase this disk. Indeed, I would encourage anyone else who has purchased this DVD to protest to Universal about this forced advertising. Anyone who pays full price for a new DVD should not have to sit through unwanted advertising to view their purchase.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "And I Shall be Pleased", June 4, 2003
By 
mljkb (I ain't tellin you, QE CAN) - See all my reviews
What happens when God gives a whining, complaining ordinary Joe his powers? "Bruce Almighty" attempts to answer that question, with Jim Carrey playing Bruce Nolan, the whining, complaining ordinary Joe. And Carrey has a field day with the character, delivering some of his funniest stuff yet, which include a tyrade on a newscast from Niagra Falls and making his rival newsman speak in gibberish. Jennifer Aniston does well in her first mainstream role as Nolan's girlfriend Grace, and Morgan Freeman never takes his God role too seriously, which adds an extra layer of humor to a movie already chock full of Carrey's physical gags.
Nolan (Carrey) is a reporter at a Bufallo news station, buts what he really wants to be is an anchorman. But when his rival takes the job instead, and he loses his job because of his tyrade at Niagra Falls, he gets fired and starts to get on God's (Freeman) nerves because of his complaining. All the while, he is starting to neglect his girlfriend Grace (Anniston). But God hears Bruce's complaints and bestows his powers on him. Carrey thinks all his problems are now solved as he now becomes known as Mr. Exclusive because he makes it so he covers amazing, freak stories, like a metorite hitting Earth. Although, Bruce soon finds out that his new found fame is taking him away from what he really enjoys, i.e. grace, and he is going to lose all that if he does not change himself and how he acts.
And that is the film's moral: instead of asking for everything, you have to get off your butt and do it yourself, and think about people other than yourself. Despite the occasional corny moment, director Tom Shadyac (Who collaborated with Carrey on "Liar, Liar") still manages to lend enough gravity and emotion to the message, and makes a wholly satisfying conclusion to a movie that will make your sides split, as well as make you rethink the way you go about life.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Moral Of The Story, September 22, 2004
By 
Sir George Martini "Verbalosity" (Fromage Au Gratin, Wisconsin) - See all my reviews
Bruce Nolan is a flunky reporter who is always sent on remote locations to cover ridiculous assignments for a local television station in Buffalo. His life goal is to be head news anchor, but his career is cut short when he swears on the air. After his neglected girlfriend dumps him and everything in his life goes awry, Bruce asks God for Help. God answers him, but Bruce cops an attitude and tells God how unfair He is and what a terrible job He is doing in the world. God listens patiently and tells Bruce that he can play God for a while, which is similar to giving explosives to a child.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Taking faith seriously, June 8, 2003
By 
Nathan Schock (Sioux Falls, SD United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
A Hollywood movie that treats God reverently and extols the importance of prayer while using A-list actors and managing to be funny? It'd be easier to find the Loch Ness Monster, right? Well, it was. Then -- on Memorial Day, 2003 -- Tom Shadyac released Bruce Almighty.
The latest vehicle for Jim Carrey, Bruce Almighty delivers a series of punchlines while exploring theological truths in a serious manner. The Bible encourages us to be content in all circumstances and the TV news reporter played by Jim Carrey is anything but content with his life at the movie's outset. Despite his successes, in comparison to others he finds himself lacking and blames the shortcomings on God.
His redemption comes from being endowed with God's powers, not because of the power he gains, but because of the insight it gives him into the life of others. Bruce -- along with the movie audience -- understands the interconnectedness of the human race when he tries to exercise his new powers. He realizes that when one person gets the promotion, someone else doesn't, and if everyone wins the lottery it's not worth much.
The movie is from Hollywood, not Christendom, so the movie isn't entirely family-friendly or doctrinally pure. However, it is a hysterically funny film that treats the Christian faith with respect...and that's pretty rare from Hollywood.
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35 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh God! What a movie!, May 20, 2003
I'd say I've seen at least half of Jim Carey's movies. After seeing Almighty Bruce, I would have to call this my favorite of his.
Jim plays a local network newsman in Buffalo, New York. One bad thing after another happens to him (gang attacked, missed out on a promotion, dog with a bladder the size of a swimming pool). He snaps and goes on a verbal rampage against God.
God (played very well by Morgan Freeman) calls him out and gives him His power to see if he can do it any better.
After paying too much attention to his own needs and vengeance, he starts to realize it's a bigger job than he thought.
The movie doesn't dwell too much into the religious side of the storyline. It's more of a "knowing what a miracle really is" and "what free will means" angle.
Jennifer Aniston plays Jim's very sexy girlfriend. About the only thing that didn't make sense is how naive her character is by not reacting to the odd things that happen the way most of us would. Example: (as seen in the commercial) opening the bathroom door to see their dog sitting on the toilet taking a dump and reading the newspaper. Her facial expression is a bit too "whatever..".
Movie warnings: profanity, overdramatic orgasms, monkey probing, and Jim singing 'What If God Was One Of Us'. :)
Worth the matinee and evening ticket prices. Enjoy!
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth seeing, May 28, 2003
By 
Ivonna (Bothell, WA USA) - See all my reviews
I thought everything was handled with incredible comedic timing. The first half of the movie the audience was laughing about every 20 seconds. Jim Carrey did a fantastic job and played his role differently (but still very funny) than in movies such as The Mask, Ace Venturas, Liar Liar, Me Myself and Irene, Dumb and Dumber, Truman Show, and Batman. His facial expressions were perfect. Jennifer Aniston was great, and so was Morgan Freeman. There were a few more serious moments partway through the film, but with quick "recoveries". And yet, I believe, the serious moments were written extremely well.
So on to who wouldn't like this film and who would, based on approaches to faith in God. If you do believe in a God, and try to conform to what you believe that God wants from you, you may or may not like this movie. It shows God in a way I know I hope God would be - very compassionate and good-humored, but some might be upset by the portrayal of limited power (not just free will, but being overwhelmed by prayers). Some might not like that God would give his powers to someone who used those powers at times to beat up bad guys and glance up skirts once (could have been worse, though - absolute power is supposed to corrupt absolutely and Bruce was selfish but somewhat reasonable). If you don't believe in a God, I think the humor of the film and the magical "what if" will be most enjoyable. If you subconsciously or consciously do believe in a God but are not doing what you think that God requires, part of this film may be unpleasant for you.
I'm glad Jennifer Aniston and Jim Carrey didn't get very physical. They were believable as a couple, but not too physical. I thought the movie was sweetly romantic even without physical involvement. Better that way. I'd like to see Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston stay happily married, so kudos to everybody who came up with the physical limit. Jennifer was wonderful and very pretty too!
This is funnier than Liar Liar and Patch Adams, which were also directed by the same director. Everybody was perfectly cast. I now can't wait for the DVD!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A relationship with the Creator, love, compassion, and selflessness., August 8, 2006
By 
`Bruce Almighty' was Jim Carrey's triumphant return to comedy after scratching the dramatic itch. After delivering such great performances in `The Truman Show' and `Man in the Moon', a return to the rubber-faced, flopping around Jim Carrey feels somewhat dated. Yes, Carrey's antics were getting stale at that time. But, fortunately, `Bruce' is a movie that matures along with him. In this sense it is actually a welcome sight when the movie puts its silly physical comedy in the backseat for the more dramatic exploration of the story's possibilities in the 3rd act.

Carrey is showing his stuff here because this story and character is strong enough to have stood in the shoes of another. Shadyac did well to cast the great Morgan Freeman as Alpha and Omega. Freeman brings an elegant all knowing air and a humanistic touch together for an intriguing interpretation of God. Far better and more memorable than just a bright light or all-business interpretation. Jennifer Aniston, as usual, remains the weakest element in the movie as Bruce's live-in girlfriend and proverbial Holy Spirit in this symbolic trinity. `Daily Show' alumni Steve Carrell gets a chance to show off on the big screen although his big trailer moment isn't as funny as the director seems to think.

More than its individual moments, `Bruce' is admirable for the creativity and, to be honest, simple audacity of its story. The movie has a clear vision and the script is sharp, intelligent and witty - a rarity in slacker comedies. The movie isn't too enamored with its own cleverness, applying its touches in blotches all over the movie and sometimes in unexpected ways. A subject that, no matter how fanciful it is dealt with by movies, manages to send both traditionalists and atheists into a rage with demands that the movie's view fit into their own. Like `Dogma' and `The Devil's Advocate' it's refreshing to see that this kind of movie can still get made.

This movie might not quite top the previous high such as the adult fairy tale `Liar, Liar,' but "Bruce Almighty" is an interesting and entertaining comedy that brings religion as one of its major themes.
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Bruce Almighty [HD DVD]
Bruce Almighty [HD DVD] by Tom Shadyac (HD DVD - 2007)
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