Stars: Steve Carrell, Tina Fey, Mark Wahlberg
Director: Shawn Levy
Created as a vehicle for two of our superstars of comedy, Date Night is a fairly enjoyable romp through familiar cinematic territory: The shady doings of politicians, unscrupulous police officers, and some hapless folks who inadvertently find themselves caught up in the shenanigans that ensue--somehow calling upon that inner wellspring of bravery and resourcefulness they didn't know they possessed until their lives were on the line, turning the situation to their advantage in the end.
Steve Carrell and Tina Fey are fun to watch as Phil and Claire Foster, an upscale New Jersey couple who try their best to keep their relationship from falling into that abyss of tedium and boring routine--out on a date to a pretentious, overpriced restaurant where they can't get seated, so they pose as the Tripplehorns, a couple who didn't show up to claim their reservation. This fairly innocent fudging of the truth--the kind of thing I suspect we've all done at one time or another--sets in motion a chain reaction of events that will have our couple dodging the bad guys (who've mistaken them for the real Tripplehorns--a shady couple who have some embarrassing and incriminating stuff on a flash drive that could bring down the local District Attorney were it made public) for the rest of the movie.
Good cops, bad cops, a crime boss who has bought off a bunch of them, (played by Ray Liotta, of course) and the ever shirtless Mark Wahlberg as a security expert the Fosters enlist as their ally, add to the harrowing fun of Date Night.
There's more potty-mouth in Date Night (most of it in hilarious context) than what you'd expect from a PG-13 rating, which is weird because many of the R-rated flicks I've seen lately have been rather tame in that respect, (as well as with the T&A) whereas several of the PG-13s have been unexpectedly raunchy. To which, conspiracy theorists, I'm attributing to an eventual melding of the two categories into something that would be called "RPG," or "PGR," or perhaps more accurately: B-I-T-S-- for BUTTS IN THE SEATS--which is the name of the game in Hollywood.