Movies You Aught Not Watch is Nick Rogers’ weekly, alphabetical look back at the 52 worst films of 2000 to 2009.
This shoddy-looking $175-million spinoff of Bruce Almighty left Steve Carell in the lurch for an uninspired, occasionally insulting blend of poop and pap.
Tame by comparison with Bruce, 2007’s Evan Almighty was so safe and sterile it forgot to be funny. Director Tom Shadyac seemed too busy handing out hugs in an end-credits dance sequence to offer any sort of credible comedy.
Howard Dean lost a presidential bid after a meltdown milder than the one newsman Evan Baxter (Carell) suffered in Bruce Almighty. (Remember, “I like to do the cha-cha”?) But he’s somehow elected to Congress on a promise to “change the world.”
Soon, God — still a fan of V-necks and books titled Ark-Building for Dummies, as reprised by Morgan Freemen — turns Evan into a Noah for the new era to build an ark for a coming flood. (There’s also a movie marquee that reads The 40-Year-Old Virgin Mary. It takes morons to set themselves up for that comparison.)
When not scraping pigeon droppings off his suit or tumbling down the ark, Carell is reduced to stone-faced stares and spiritual pontifications. Plus, there wasn’t an uglier film all decade with a nine-figure budget — the climactic flood a digital melee devoid of tension.
God always stresses “acts of random kindness.” (Get it? A.R.K.?) This flop at least achieves one good deed — for those involved with Speed 2: Cruise Control. They’re no longer associated with the worst summer sequel to feature a boat crashing onto land.