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VINE VOICEon November 18, 2009
As a teenager over 20 years ago I remember laughing long and hard at "Beverly Hills Cop" and even Eddie Murphy's generally irreverent and profane humor. But as a parent I am glad to see him using his talents in a more family friendly way, even if it usually borders on slapstick or over-the-top humor like Jim Carrey (this one didn't quite go that far). And I must admit that the commercials featuring that stupidly annoying kid throwing plastic balls at him in the playground didn't put this one on my "must-see" list. But my wife rented it one night and I was pleasantly surprised.

Murphy plays Evan Danielson, an aggressive workaholic investment consultant with no time for family - in fact, he's divorced and has no connection with his daughter, Olivia (about 6 years old, I think). But when he's forced to care for her for a week he's insensitive to her security blanket and imaginary friends... until he realizes that these friends are giving surprisingly accurate investment advice. And thus begins a relationship with his daughter that, although not initially based on the right reasons, opens his eyes to what he's missing out on.

I'm not exactly a devotee of this type of movie and haven't really seen any of Murphy's films since Disney's "The Haunted Mansion" (which was very disappointing compared to "Pirates of the Caribbean"), but my kids and I really enjoyed this one. I didn't notice any foul language and any crude jokes must have gone right over my head. Yara Shahidi was perfectly cute as his neglected daughter, and Thomas Hayden Church was particularly funny as Johnny Whitefeather, his main competition at work with phony Native American investing advice. The plot-line may be formulaic and in some ways the moral-of-the-story done a bit too Hollywood-ish, but I thought the movie was quite fun, and definitely better than I expected.
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on February 1, 2010
This was a different Eddie Murphy movie and one that should have done better in the ratings than it did. I bought it for family members who are very particular as to what they allow children to watch. It was funny, had a message regarding a father's need to
take time to be a real father. The little girl in movie was excellent in the part. I have bought this movie for future viewing.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon January 9, 2010
Eddie Murphy is a long ways away now from his box office days, which goes to show just how hard it is to stay on top and to stay relevant. IMAGINE THAT follows his trend of starring in kid-friendly flicks, except that this one isn't as good as the SHREK films, as as good as DR. DOLITTLE or even DADDY DAY CARE. That IMAGINE THAT is watchable at all is due to some nice interplay between Murphy and the little girl who plays his daughter in the movie.

The story elements couldn't be more trite or unoriginal. Workaholic investment adviser Evan Danielson (Murphy) is intent on climbing that corporate ladder and barely finds time for his 7-year-old kid Olivia. When his separated wife sticks him with babysitting Olivia, Evan agrees - after all, he does love his daughter - but Olivia, cute but peculiar, is no match for his work portfolio. Olivia's favorite thing in the world is her googah, which is this blue security blanket and also her portal to an imaginary world and her invisible friends.

For Evan, it's hard to do work when your kid is incessantly talking silly nonsense to herself. But is it really nonsense? When Olivia's make-believe princess friends end up dispensing savvy investment tips, Evan decides that he ought to spend more time with his daughter. Er, because he loves her.

Kids may like this, probably, because Yara Shahidi is cute and earnest and simply very good as Olivia. But the story follows a predictable path. Its payoff is weak and involves Murphy's character having to get to his daughter's big school concert. Not that it matters, but we never do learn for sure if the fantasy element really is of a magical nature or rooted in a more earthbound explanation. There's an attempt near the end to suggest that maybe, just maybe Olivia's imaginary friends are real but, like I said, it's weak. Eddie Murphy does his usual enjoyable fast-talking thing, and actually he tones down his brand of silly even more in favor of constructing a more affecting emotional core to the story. It's a good move because the father/daughter moments are the best parts of the movie.

Thomas Haden Church will either make you laugh or exasperate you with his interpretation of a smarmy rival of Evan's who applies his part-Native American heritage and some weird New Agey philosophy to get the jump on our guy (Church's character is labeled a "Man Whisperer"). Stephen Root, Martin Sheen, and Ronny Cox are here, too, and so what?

The thing about cameos featuring current famous people is that, sometimes, they fall out of relevance or their situations change, and this has the effect of dating the movie. Allen Iverson is long gone from the Denver Nuggets and now back in Philly, something which jarringly took me out of the movie's story. If you're not a basketball fan, then this probably doesn't bug you.

IMAGINE THAT isn't too horrible a choice if you're looking for something to divert the kids. It's not exactly top shelf material, but there's nothing objectionable in it, other than its sin of sticking to the formula. It's certainly loads better than NORBIT, which is objectionable on so many levels.
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on February 25, 2013
This movie is definitely for kids, which is why I purchased it. I have a grandson and a niece who happens to like it. I myself am a true fan of Eddie Murphy. I think he's very talented and very handsome. He's funny and very intellingent and might I add very creative. His professionalism comes off as very unique and he can appear in any movie and make it funny. His co-star in the movie is very adorable. She's also smart and funny as well. Overall I loved this movie. I will definitely recommend my friends to purchase this movie for their kids. I was very satisfied with the price I paid. I will be purchasing more movies in the near future.
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This movie continues Murphy's niche of kid-friendly movies. A lot of the scripted humor will make the kids laugh at loud, along with Murphy's ad-libs which are indeed funny. However, the premise / plot of the movie is very predictable and adults in the room will absolutely groan and roll their eyes (that's what happened at my house).

If you're looking for a movie to entertain late elementary / early middle school kids this one will be a winner - adults, not so much.
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on September 3, 2013
Like most movies similar this movies is a bit predictable, but very enjoyable and fun to watch with kids. Eddie Murphy is good and as funny as ever without cursing in a movie for younger audiences. The movie has good lessons to be learned. No issues at all with playback on video on demand.
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on September 19, 2015
One of Eddie Murphy's most enjoyable movies!
I would definitely recommend this movie! It is one of my favorites!
Movie has a nice story line and Murphy shows his comical talent, versatility and enjoyment of working with children.
Movie was shot in the Denver Metro area so anyone who lives in Colorado will appreciate the location shots.
Suitable for all ages to watch.
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on September 5, 2013
A sweet lil movie about a father-daughter relationship. Eddie has always been a great comedian turned actor ( I was just watching one of his interviews with David Letterman where he says he used to steal hubcaps even after he started on Saturday Night Live.........he finally stopped and realized he didnt have to do that anymore--lol!!).......his little co-star is purely adorable.
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on February 28, 2012
I loved the Wannabe tribe references, they were hilarious, especially since they hit so close to home for me.

The story itself is pretty good, Eddie Murphy does a great job of portraying a distressed character, as always. Good messages built in, lots of awkward situations. It's great. But not "must see".
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on June 4, 2015
At first, I saw some of this movie on cable and it was commercialed to death. Once I saw it in it's entirety I really liked it. It had been a while since I saw what I consider a "good" Eddie Murphy movie. Jokes and slapstick were kept to a minimum and I loved the plot. Of course the daughter was as cute as a button.
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