Even with comedy stars, “Identity Thief” flops


photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

“Identity Thief” fails to offer any new humor after most of the funny scenes showed in trailers.

Kathryn Browne, Staff Writer

Since the moment the trailer was released, “Identity Thief” created an anxious buzz amongst moviegoers. Comedy superstars Melissa McCarthy (“Bridesmaids”) and Jason Bateman (“Horrible Bosses”) team up as the lead roles for this road trip comedy, only stirring up more excitement.

Bateman plays Sandy Patterson, a loving family man under the pressure of his demanding boss, who is scammed into giving out personal information to McCarthy’s character. She uses this information to copy credit cards and bank accounts to buy herself lavish gifts under Bateman’s name. When Sandy is accused of committing crimes in Florida, he must track down the fake Sandy and drag her back to Denver for arrest. The two must drive from Florida to Colorado and through their cross-country adventure, they grow closer as they discover they aren’t exactly as they seem.

Despite both actors ability to make any movie a blockbuster hit, their comedic skills failed to save this film. Almost every laugh producing scene was already shown in the movie trailers leaving viewers unsurprised. Following the success of the actors’ past works, “Identity Thief” was quite disappointing. Viewers expected a great, hilarious film when in reality, only a few lines produced a short laugh across the audience.


Despite a lackluster script, McCarthy was spot-on with her performance as the fake Sandy Patterson. Her goofy persona carried into this role as she spoke almost every funny line of the film. McCarthy’s timing and execution of the lines was what made the role work for her. Unfortunately for her, a few funny lines don’t make an entire movie successful and entertaining.

Jason Bateman played his role successfully as well. When it comes to playing a fatherly role, Bateman always makes it work. His sarcasm was a great contrast to McCarthy’s spunky, out-there humor. The casting for this movie was great but was let down by a bland script.

The plot took a long time to pick up and when it did, it attempted a deep, underlying message with a predictable ending. After countless, funny trailers for the film, the script lacked the anticipated funny plot and replaced it with a moral lesson of “don’t judge a book by its cover.”

“Identity Thief” was anticipated to be another “Bridesmaids”-like comedy but turned out to be a slightly funny comedy with an unexpected moral message.The movie is worth the rent if you’re planning a Friday night in with a couple of friends, but it’s not worth the full movie experience at the theater.