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Kangaroo Jack

Starring: Jerry O'Connell, Anthony Anderson and Esyelle Warren.
Directed by: David McNally
Rated: PG



Kangaroo Jack was surprisingly enjoyable. January is known for its blasé films. Frankly it can be a viscous time when the studios sneak the stink bombs they produced into theaters while desperately avoiding eye contact. I kept thinking is my laughter stress related? Am I so abused from the friggitini garbage I have been force fed for the last two weeks that now any inkling of comedy gets me to a happy place? Nope. Kangaroo Jack is silly family fun!

They can thank the chemistry of the stars - yes even the CGI kangaroo, Jack. The human talent, Jerry O'Connell and Anthony Anderson are a refreshing delight. Besides Jerry's an exceptionally handsome young buck — um yum —that's about six foot something of pure girly giggle inducing man heroin. He's likable - always. And unlike the pathetic buddy attempt of National Security, which I am in anger management therapy over, you buy the friendship 'tween he and Anthony Anderson.

The story is nothing particularly brilliant. Mob stepson Charlie Carbone (Jerry O'Connell) is sent to Australia to deliver a huge amount of payola to a ruffian with a manly stance that -here- has a striking DNA resemblance to Russell Crowe. Coincidence? I think not Mr. Studio Producer!

Charlie's not having a good day. Once again he has managed to try the patience of his violent step dad (Christopher Walkin). It's bad enough Charlie's a hairdresser but when his best friend Louis (Anthony Anderson), again, involves him in some ridiculous shenanigans that happen to lead a bevy of police directly into step dad's emporium of stolen goods, thusly a four million dollar loss prevails for the mob boss, Charlie has to redeem himself but quick. And step dad don't want no gift certificates for a lifetime supply of mullets!

Step dad decides he can do so by jumping on an airplane and bringing an associate, Mr. Smith (Martin Csokas) down-under a package…the goods…the loot. Simple.

Ah, but Louis is a human trouble seeking missile. After arriving and setting out easy enough, the mayhem begins when they run their rent-a-jeep or Cadillac of the outback into a poor kangaroo.

The creature is dead-o-rama. As they clear the carcass to the side, Louis notices the kangaroo is the spitting marsupial image of a guy they know back in Brooklyn named Jackie Legs. Louis decides to dress the roo up in his Brooklyn jacket and snap some Polaroid's- just for fun.

Ah, but Jack's not dead at all. And in one of the funniest reanimation scenes since Tommy Boy's infamous deer in the convertible, Jack springs to life and gives the two what for. He kicks their butts Aussie style. And ricochets off into the unknown.

G'day seems Louis had stashed the package of cash in the jacket they dressed Jack up in. Oh, dear. This is not good. They've got no car, no package and they're in the middle of the nowhereville aka the dreaded outback. Mr. Smith will understand the delay…not. Smith wigs and you get the feeling would be delighted at the excuse to joyfully dismembers them over a draft of Fosters while his shrimp toast on the Barbie. Sorry.

They turn to conveniently transplanted American Jessie (Estelle Warren) a chickbabe that just so happens to specialize in wildlife. Jessie's willing to assist and you can see the cartoon hearts popping above Charlie's hornball head as they set off after Jack.

Is it great? No. But it's a good movie for the whole family to lighten up a bit get silly and overlook the multiple clichés. The story's stupiddone before and generic. But, it's not for intelligent adults. The cast seems to really being having fun and it's contagious. Hit the Ground Round and then take the whole family for a bit of nonsensical movie viewing. Goodonya!

Snack Recommendation: Icees and vegamite.


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