Friday, December 12, 2008

The VERDICT is IN! Bruce is Aces!!

DVD Verdict gets all gooey on MY NAME IS BRUCE....


Campbell, as ever, gives 110 percent to the role. Playing himself as a bombastic, drunken, lecherous coward, Campbell seems comfortable mocking both himself and his career. It's this combination of self-depreciation and self-awareness that has always made Campbell such a likeable actor; here it acts as the channel for so much of the film's humor. The cowardly aspect, something that has been a great source of comedy since Campbell screamed like a woman in Evil Dead 2 is mined to great effect during the first half of the movie. Upon first encountering Guan Di, Campbell, who until that moment had assumed the whole thing was a joke, runs away in fear, leaving the folk of Gold Lick in his wake. Campbell's reaction is hilarious, as is the sight of him firing wildly in the direction of Guan Di, only to hit the fleeing townsfolk instead. Meanwhile a Rawhide gag early on is worth the price of admission alone.

Following his directorial debut with the 2005 stinker The Man With The Screaming Brain, Campbell shows a much more assured touch here, keeping the film far more focused on what is essential than the often scattershot Screaming Brain. There's no question Mark Verheiden's script is vital to the film's success, its relative simplicity helping to ensure the film maintains a consistent flow of gags and action. Clearly understanding both his subject and target audience, Verheiden lovingly sends up and celebrates the glory that is Campbell without ever coming close to ridiculing him.