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Sunday, 24 September 2017

Weekend TV Movie Review: Nutty Professor II: The Klumps (2000), ITV1

Nutty Professor II: The Klumps 
Cast: Eddie Murphy, Janet Jackson, Larry Miller, John Ales
Genre: Romantic Comedy Sci-Fi
Worldwide Box Office Gross: over $166 million 

Plot: Scientist Sherman Klump's inventions, his impending marriage to his pretty colleague, Denise Gaines and his reputation are threatened by his evil clone, Buddy Love

'Double The Klumps Doesn't Equate To A Better Movie In This Recycled Comedy'

The follow-up to the original film of 1996, which was a remake of the original Nutty Professor with Jerry Lewis, Nutty Professor II is a comedy that just doesn't know what to do with itself and stick with it, and when it attempts to do so, it does way too much that it becomes a tangled web of a mess that it can't seem to undo itself.

In the sequel, Sherman wants to make a fountain of youth but before that, he has to get rid of Buddy Love, who is still inside of him. Janet Jackson is Denise: Sherman's love interest and fellow work colleague, who resides at the same college as him. But he has competition in Buddy Love for Denise's affections.

The Klumps suffers in many areas: the dinner table conversation with the Klump family members is unfunny and tiresome and as funny as Eddie Murphy is, his character riffs and motormouth antics as amusing as it can be can also be tiresome to listen to. Not one single line from each member that was uttered made me laugh or smile. & it also bored me to death. The problem with the Nutty Professor movies is that the excessive slapstick not only can become grating, but it further diminishes the film and becomes more mean-spirited. And yet again, there is soothing background music, but then 2, 3 scenes later, there is cursing, over-the-top silliness. The first film was still watchable and the balance between the comedy and story was reasonable, but with the sequel, it tries to do too much - and too much of a good thing, is not a good thing; the jokes aren't great and are even less amusing than in the first film. It doesn't matter if the film has Eddie Murphy, Robin Williams, Steve Martin, Jim Carrey: they may be funny comedians and they all are, in their own individual ways, but no matter how big the star, its jokes and gags, the one-liners, the punchlines, the slapstick silliness which are the bigger deal here for a comedy movie. & if there is a lack of all that or that they are badly written or are unfunny, the film has failed, regardless.

As I sat through Nutty Professor II, not much about it is different from the first film, or a lot of it isn't for the best. I just didn't laugh or smile and none of the jokes really worked. It's as if they recycled and rehashed a bunch of stuff from the first movie and not make an effort in making it amusing. The only thing that has changed is the addition of Janet Jackson as Denise, but that is pretty much it. The movie doesn't give her character much to do, but smile & show concern.

And whilst it was a change to see the Klumps have more of a pivotal role in the film and in the story, the creators sacrificed everything else and in its place is a boring film with obnoxious loudmouth, Buddy Love, popping up on occasions, just to mouth off and spout out more nasty words about fat people and being obese. & it gets old, fast, along with shy, down-to-earth Sherman as a bore of a character.

But for a few tiny moments, the film and the story were relatively bland that it had me switching off. The jokes are low-brow (and even lamer with the fart and flatulence gags), but just as, or probably more tasteless than in the first Nutty Professor movie. I'm actually shocked that Jerry Lewis who lent his name to this sequel wanted to be part of this bad script. As for Eddie Murphy, most of what he said and did, did not amuse me and clearly, his best years were over. It's a shame what has happened to his movie career: things were going great for Murphy in the 1980s, but then came Harlem Nights before the turn of the 1990s, and things haven't been the same since. It's a great shame.

As the movie continued, the less invested I became in the movie and in the characters. This follow-up doesn't really attempt to do anything new or different that we haven't seen before, rather it is the first film but with 1 or 2 embellishments made. & whilst I don't mind more Eddie Murphy, I'd rather it was the Eddie Murphy of the 1980s when he was at his best and when he was known for characters such as Billy Ray Valentine and Axel Foley. & less so as the Klumps.

Nutty Professor II may be a comedy, but I mostly had a straight face when watching it. The only parts that garnered a chuckle are the old elderly boyfriend of a woman kicking Sherman's dad's ass & grandma Klump kissing Buddy Love, with Buddy throwing up afterwards.

The late Roger Ebert awarded this movie 3 out of 4 - that is even further proof why I ignore professional movie critics. When the outtakes appear to be a tad funnier than the majority of this film, that says it all with this movie. 

Final Verdict:

A film that undeservedly warranted a sequel, but managed to get one due to the massive box office takings of the prequel, it merely exists to generate even more money & ride on the original film's coattails.

Nutty Professor II does too much, offers too much of the same thing of the first film - and still, it underwhelms with its lazy approach and weak script, which didn't do its star, Eddie Murphy, any favours. I enjoy low-brow comedies from time to time and as silly as a lot of it was, I just didn't break out into a hearty laugh with this one.

As much as Eddie Murphy has starred in a number of bombs throughout his movie career, there are some movies of his I do enjoy, despite their lack of success (Boomerang, Vampire In Brooklyn, Metro). This is one instance where the filmmakers were unable to harness Eddie's comedic talents by giving him a lacklustre, mundane and choppy script.

& it is because of this that Nutty Professor II feels forgettable, unmemorable, and unnecessary.


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