Steve Carell and Tina Fey in a movie together seemed like comic gold. The two of them married and on the run from crooked cops seemed even better, right? Date Night reached high, but fell short.
While trying to spice up their marriage, Phil and Claire Foster (Carell, Fey) switch up their date night routine and opt for dinner in Manhattan as opposed to their local suburban hang out. Unaware that you can’t just walk in to get a table on a Friday night, the Fosters steal the reservation of another couple after seeing that they are not there to claim it.
While enjoying their time in an upscale NYC restaurant, eating truffles and taking random pictures of Will.i.am, they are mistaken for the couple whose reservation they stole. Two henchmen (Jimmi Simpson, Common) take the unsuspecting couple outside and demand information about their boss. Thinking that the men are just playing a joke on them for lying about the reservation, the Fosters make joke after joke until the men take out their guns and Phil Foster says, “…he turned it sideways…that’s a kill shot.”
Forced to leave with the men, the Fosters must decide whether to play along and assume the identities of the other couple in order to stay alive or risk their lives by escaping. As they try to prove their innocence, Claire involves a past work client, Holbrooke (Mark Wahlberg). Knowing that he has experience as a private investigator, Claire hopes that he can help track down the real couple the men are after. As the Fosters trek all over the city in an attempt to clear their names, they get involved in shoot-outs, car chases and even some risqué behavior.
I wanted to love this movie. I would’ve been happy to even really like this movie. Sadly, it fell short of my lofty expectations. Carell and Fey definitely had some funny moments, but many were just too obvious. I thought Carell was actually pretty great in this film and Fey was alright. I think Fey is a bit overexposed at the moment, which could have led to my lukewarm feelings towards her. I will say that her outfit at the end of the film required a lot of guts. The costume is definitely not something you’d expect to see her in.
I have mixed feelings about the supporting cast though. I really liked James Franco and Mila Kunis as the “Tripplehorn’s,” but there wasn’t nearly enough of them in the film. Ray Liotta always plays the bad guy mobster, which he does very well, but there’s just nothing new about that type of role for him. I am a fan of Taraji P. Henson, but I didn’t care for her in the role of a detective. I thought Wahlberg was a great addition to this film. The role played on Wahlberg’s physique and allowed for comedic moments as Carell’s character tried to come to terms with his wife being in close contact with a man of his stature.
I found myself wanting to laugh at certain points, but just not being able to. It was a noticeable difference to the times that I laughed at length. This movie wasn’t bad, but it left me expecting more.