The first trailer for Dumb and Dumber To hit the Internet this week, and in an unusual move, Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels hit the talk show circuit to promote it. It's been a long time since either the Farrelly Brothers or Carrey made a great movie, but hopefully going back to something that made us love them to begin with will revitalize them.
All the talk about Dumb and Dumber To has gotten us thinking about the original, which came out an astounding 20 years ago. It wrapped up a pretty ridiculous year for Jim Carrey, in which he made Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, The Mask and Dumb and Dumber. Few actors have ever seen their status grow that much in a single 12-month period, and it earned him so much goodwill with the public that he continues to get starring vehicles despite a pretty staggering number of flops in recent years.
The original Dumb and Dumber is widely seen as Carrey's greatest triumph and lines like "So you're saying there's a chance?" are widely quoted to this day. The movie runs one hour and forty-seven minutes, though they left a lot of great scenes on the cutting room floor. Check out this extended version of the Jacuzzi scene.
Carrey is absolutely brilliant as he transitions from playful to creepy to menacing within about 20 seconds, and Jeff Daniels' reactions to the madness are priceless. This is actually the scene they ran during the initial rehearsals for the movie to see whether or not Daniels could handle such a goofy role. The studio wanted to cast Nicolas Cage, but he turned it down. That turned out to be a fateful moment for Daniels, who used to role to display his incredible range.
Daniels actually started filming the sequel right after wrapping up the last season of The Newsroom, and it's difficult to think of two projects that are more different. We have high hopes for Dumb and Dumber To, but there are extremely few great comedy sequels in movie history, and even fewer that came two decades after the original. Hopefully Dumb and Dumber To breaks that trend.