An Englishman returns after nine years abroad and tells strange stories of the tiny people of Lilliput, the giants of Brobdingnang, the flying island Laputa, and the Houyhnhnms, a race of intelligent horses.
Lemuel Gulliver (Jack Black) has been working in the mail room of a New York daily newspaper for the past ten years. Afraid to put himself out there, he considers himself a loser, as do all of his peers. One day, after having finally had enough, he decides to declare his love to the beautiful Darcy Silverman (Amanda Peet), the newspaper's travel editor and one of Gulliver's only friends, only to chicken out at the last minute and instead tell her that he'd like to try his hand at writing a column. Darcy accepts and sends him on an assignment to the Bermuda Triangle. There, Gulliver becomes shipwrecked and ends up on the island of Liliput, where he is twelve times taller than the tallest man. For the first time, Gulliver has people looking up to him.Written by
The text in the "newspapers" in the end credits is actual text from the original novel by Jonathan Swift, and mentioned some adventures that were not featured in this movie, but featured in the 1939 movie adaptation, like the encounters with the subhuman "yahoos". See more »
Gulliver finds his iPhone, but although there is no signal he is still able to retrieve his voice messages. See more »
I'm not doing this. You got me in the diaper and the dress. I'm not doing tea time with you! Go find another doll!
[the giant girl breaks a rabbit doll's head]
Tea, time for tea! Haha...
See more »
The end credits are presented as part of newspaper clips from Gulliver's column. Surrounding the credits is actual text from the original novel by Jonathan Swift, and mentions some adventures from the book that are not featured in the movie, such as the encounters with the subhuman "yahoos". See more »
I've seen the version of the story starring Ted Danson, which was quite good. This is nothing like that.
Jack Black's Gulliver starts out in the real world of the present day, with a smart phone. That's all you really need to know about when this took place.
He's not happy with his life in the mail room, and he wants more. A relationship with travel writer Darcy, and more opportunities to do the real work of the New York Tribune.
The Internet makes things easy. When I was in high school and college, there was plagiarism, but it was more challenging because what we know today as the Internet didn't exist. Gulliver has an easy time impressing Darcy and gets sent to the Bermuda Triangle. Oh, so this is how it will work.
And it's actually a pretty exciting scene as Gulliver gets sent into another dimension. Then he has the experience that Danson had, only funnier. This version of the story, pretty much limited to Lilliput, will go for laughs.
And Lilliput is quite a complete nation, but with very small people compared to Gulliver. The castle where the royal family lives is huge. There is a city with lots of people, with varying ethnic backgrounds, and a countryside outside that city. And the Lilliputians have wars against other very small people from other nations.
Only after Gulliver shows his value in fighting a war is he treated with respect. He is a hero. And then things get quite silly. Every movie Gulliver has ever seen becomes a detail of his life, and pop culture references show up in abundance. We later see a giant R2D2 from "Star Wars", combined with "Transformers", used in battle, for example. All because Gulliver's plans for a video game become a fighting robot.
Meanwhile, the prisoner Horatio vies with the nasty Edward for the heart of Princess Mary. Horatio is released only because Gulliver is his friend.
There is one scene where Mary is kidnapped, and I'm not sure whether it is atrocious writing or atrocious acting. No, it's actually brilliant writing and good acting, because most of the acting in this movie is quite good. I mean for the material. It takes real effort to make the acting look really bad.
I am curious about one thing. Of course Gulliver loses cell phone service when he gets close to the Bermuda Triangle. How then is it possible he can receive the voice mails he missed--AFTER he crosses over? And these voice mails are quite important--if you think about it, there's an interesting plot twist coming.
The battle scenes are pretty impressive. I watch several CW super hero shows, and it's a lot like that. Even Horatio gets involved.
There is one cute scene in the world where everyone is big. It only has a little girl, who is quite big compared to Gulliver. Imagine what she would look like to Lilliputians.
And the movie has a big musical number which is quite well done. Again, it seems silly to have the entire cast performing a song Gulliver likes. Also, the music here is quite old compared to, say, a romantic comedy starring teenagers. It comes closer to what I like. Let's say that.
No, it doesn't rank as the most impressive of the productions based on the literary work. No, it is not literary work on its own. But it is enjoyable and somewhat well done. If you're the type of person who can enjoy Jack Black, you will probably like this.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this