I took my daughter to see the Sneak preview showing of this film the week before it came out. I was expecting a fun movie for 12 year olds, heavy on the scatological humor, light on the brains. While some reviewers will say this is exactly what you get with Kangaroo Jack, we were pleasantly surprised by this film.
There is quite a bit of silliness in this movie, and truthfully there are indeed some "poot" jokes. On the other hand, you could tell that the writers actually gave a darn when they were writing this movie. They trust the viewer enough to set something up early on and let it pan out later.
Further, there is a lot of humor in the movie that is above the waistline as well. On a reluctant trip to Australia to deliver Mob Money that they think might save their lives, two best friends accidentally hit and presumably kill a Kangaroo with their rented Jeep. Louis, the joker of the two, decides it would make a hilarious picture to dress up the 'Roo in a Brooklyn Jacket and Sunglasses. Fortunately the 'Roo is alive and hops away. Unfortunately he takes the Jacket with all the Mob Money still in it with him.
The remainder of the movie is a hilarious romp across the outback with the two buddies tripping from scene to scene attempting to get their money, and (they believe) their lives back from Kangaroo "Jackie Legs!"
There are a few twists and turns, some predictable... others, less so, and more than a few "you've got to be kidding" moments. But it's all in good fun!
Jerry O'Connell is better than usual as the protagonist. He manages to gain the viewer's sympathy early on, and doesn't resort to such idiotic conventions as in Tomcats. Anthony Anderson is likewise hilarious as O'Connell's best buddy. This guy is a great physical comedian, and never seems embarrassed about his weight. Together they seem a lot like they're on one of the Road pictures featuring Crosby and Hope. No, they're not as great as Crosby and Hope, but they do pretty well! Estella Warren is lovely as ever and is given a little more to do in this movie than is common for her. Christopher Walken plays the same typical Mafioso clown we've seen in a hundred movies with and without Walken in them. He plays a stock character, and plays him as such. His misuse of the English Language and vain attempts to improve upon this obvious misuse does crate a smile or two.
Essentially this is a truly fun movie. By no means is this a contender for nine Oscars, nor will it be on any Critic's top ten list... but, seriously, was that the plan? This movie sets out early on to be a fun ride, and it really delivers. Everyone in the Theatre seemed to be having the fun that was promised in the movie, and at the same time, never did the movie talk down to the viewer.
It may not be Citizen Kane, but if you're looking for a fun ride with more than a few laughs, give this film a chance. It just might surprise you!