Friday, June 12, 2009

Hank Azaria Makes Night at the Museum 2

I was somewhat disappointed with Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian, for a variety of reasons.

First, although all the old exhibit cast are back, they have very little to do. Ricky Gervais doesn't get to do his schtick of never finishing a sentence, Jedediah and Octavius are separated for most of the movie so there's none of their comraderie, the character of Amelia Earhart is so far removed from her real character that it isn't even funny...

The man who made the movie was Hank Azaria as the villain of the piece Ankmunrah. He manages to be hilarious, and at times very menacing.

Throughout the movie, Azaria does his character with a Boris Karloff accent (doubtless since Karloff played "The Mummy" in 1933 and has one of the most distinctive voices of all time).

So when Kahmunrah is speaking with Darth Vader, and asks, "Why are you wearing the cape? Are we going to the opera? I don't think so." That is really funny. Because Karloff played an opera singer/suspected murderer in Charlie Chan at the Opera, in one of the best Chan movies... A bit of an in-joke there.

(It's the last few seconds of the trailer below)


At the beginning of the movie, Larry is rich. His gadgets have finally taken of. He hasn't been to the museum in 2 years. But when he learns his friends are being shipped into storage at the Smithsonian, and then that Jedehdia is in trouble, he hurries to Washington to help. All very well and good. But, at the end of the movie, Jedediah reveals that he didn't call Larry for help, but to help Larry, because all the money he's making is ruining his life.

(Okay, I can't rememver the exact dialog, but I was reminded of Obama and the Dem's speeches about not trying to get rich, going into the service professions, etc. etc. )

So at the end, Larry sells his business so he can make a huge donation to the museum to ensure that the exhibits remain there and on display. Here's the thing. If he hadn't spent two years creating his fortune, he wouldn't have had the amount of money needed to make the donation, and his friends would still be packed away at the Smithsonian. Nor would he be able to retire to go back to his old job as the Night Guard.

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