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 Son of the Mask
 Critic's Rating
 Date Posted
   10th May, 2005
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Cast: Alan Cumming, Jamie Kennedy, Traylor Howard
Director: Lawrence Guterman

You familiar with those over-the-top and overtly cute Saturday morning cartoons? Yes? Then you are, in at least in some capacity, prepared to withstand the torture of "Son of the Mask." The going wouldn't have been so tough had we not the foreknowledge of its predecessor from 1994, "The Mask," a film that brought Jim Carrey to our collective public consciousness and succeeded as a throwback to the goofy humour, mild-mannered sexiness and retro jazz of the musicals from Hollywood's golden era. The only resemblance this sequel shares with it is in its title. There is no Jim Carrey, no Cameron Diaz, none of the fun, warmth or charm from the original. Still here?

Jamie Kennedy is Tim Avery, an aspiring animator fending off the desires of his wife (Traylor Howard) to have a child. Meanwhile, the trickster god, Loki (Alan Cumming hamming it up to the moon) unleashes his own reign of mischief as he hunts for his missing mask. As was expected, Tim's dog finds the mask that transforms him into the dumbest, most rigid form of Carry's Mask imaginable. Kennedy's Mask with his plastic smirk and boring mannerisms ultimately fathers the kid his wife longed to have. So far, not so weird. But get ready because the Twilight Zone meets Looney Tunes now. The bouncing baby boy, Alvey, is what Daffy Duck would be to Darth Vader. He is strangely hilarious but totally violent (insert weird music here). He bounces off the walls, drives his dad literally mad and basically tears the house apart before his afternoon nappy-changing. And if this wasn't enough then (hold the phone folks) the dog gets to be Mask too for almost one-half of the film! Now we have the baby Vs. the dog Vs. Loki who wants his mask back. Why are you still here?

At least the film seems to know its target audience. It received a PG rating in the US and is clearly geared at the baby boomer market. It still bombed at the box office. The original "The Mask" made over US$100 million and "Son of Mask" has did not break the US$ 17 million mark. I believe its life on video/DVD rental is also fairly limited. There is minor consolation to be had in the fact that at least this film has no pretense about its horribleness. So here's the deal. As a film reporter, my job is to make sure that you see certain films and ensure that sometimes you don't. "Son of Mask" definitely falls in the latter category. Is it one of the worst films I have seen? Yes, though there are other stinkers like "Johnny English" that come before it.

Congratulations you've made it this far. - Adnan Khan

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