The Pink Panther (2006)

"Bad"

The Pink Panther (2006) Review


ABC premiered America's Funniest Home Videos in 1989, and the weekly video-clip competition has gone on to become the network's longest-running comedy series. Amazingly, very little has changed since that debut show. Videos rides one predominant joke all the way to the finish line each week - people get hurt on camera, and audiences howl.

The full-contact humor propagated by the program obviously appeals to the masses. The simple formula has worked on Videos for 17 years now. So why, then, am I still surprised when a preview audience sitting through something as moronic as The Pink Panther bursts out laughing when a cyclist crashes into a car door or a senior citizen takes a blunt object to the skull?

My fondest memory of Blake Edwards' original Pink Panther series was Peter Sellers muttering "I have zee boom" as the fuse on the explosive device he possessed burned to its nub. Without fail, the comedian's deadpan delivery and subsequent explosion would send my father and me into hysterics. I'm glad dad's not around to witness this new Panther, Shawn Levy's clueless update of the beloved crime comedies. It seems the bomb now rests in our hands.

Edwards directed eight Panther movies, most of which were blessed with Sellers' presence and timing. As the series deteriorated over time, stand-ins were recruited to shoulder the slapstick, so audiences endured the comedic stylings of Ted Wass (Curse of the Pink Panther) or Roberto Benigni (Son of the Pink Panther, the franchise's lowest point).

Latest leading man Steve Martin, to his credit, doesn't sink as deep as the pint-sized Pinocchio, though he should have his SAG card revoked for even considering an attempt at filling Sellers' shoes. Martin plays incompetent French detective Jacques Clouseau, called in from the countryside by his superior (Kevin Kline) to serve as the fall guy in the high-profile murder investigation of a despised soccer coach (Jason Statham). Clouseau and his new partner (Jean Reno) have plenty of suspects, from the coach's pop-star girlfriend (Beyoncé Knowles) to the team's shifty athletic trainer, Yuri (Henry Czerny). Too bad bumbling Clouseau couldn't catch a monk in a monastery.

The current Levy-Martin collaboration is one of Hollywood's most foul, spawning the first Cheaper by the Dozen before turning its attention to this equally unnecessary remake. As long as Levy continues to convince the once-respected Martin to sell his soul for the sake of a paycheck, no classic film property is safe.

"Not every death is a tragedy," Clouseau is told by one suspect who fails to mourn the deceased. In addition, not every comedy is funny. Martin deserves half the blame, serving as co-screenwriter for a script that rehashes bad jokes and bogs down in painfully unfunny sequences. There are two 10-minute routines built around Clouseau's inability to say the word "hamburger." One sequence involving an egg, a cyclist, and an exploding food cart is almost too idiotic to mention. The parade of ill-conceived pratfalls parts on occasion to allow a decent joke through. A clever cameo nods to the man that could have become the next James Bond. And in one scene, Martin attempts a good-cop-bad-cop routine by himself, which is funny until he eventually electrocutes his own groin. Are we laughing yet?

One of these is a larger-than-life monument. One is not.



Facts and Figures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1.5 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , Tom Pollock,

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The BFG Movie Review

The BFG Movie Review

For his adaptation of the Roald Dahl classic, Steven Spielberg reunited with screenwriter Melissa Mathison,...

Finding Dory Movie Review

Finding Dory Movie Review

It's been 13 years since the release of the Disney/Pixar hit Finding Nemo, and filmmaker...

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

This is where the Star Trek franchise officially shifts from thoughtful drama into thunderous action....

Ice Age: Collision Course Movie Review

Ice Age: Collision Course Movie Review

With its fifth feature-length adventure, this franchise continues its preposterous journey at full tilt. As...

Keanu Movie Review

Keanu Movie Review

An entertaining hybrid of satirical comedy and action thriller, this madcap adventure swerves wildly between...

Ghostbusters Movie Review

Ghostbusters Movie Review

It's been more than 30 years since the Ghostbusters first hit the big screen with...

Now You See Me 2 Movie Review

Now You See Me 2 Movie Review

While the original 2013 magical caper was a big hit, it's style-over-substance approach didn't exactly...

Advertisement
The Legend of Tarzan Movie Review

The Legend of Tarzan Movie Review

It's been nearly 30 years since the last live-action Tarzan movie, and yet it still...

Maggie's Plan Movie Review

Maggie's Plan Movie Review

A New York comedy with vivid characters and a contrived plot, this feels rather a...

Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie Movie Review

Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie Movie Review

Nearly 25 years after the sitcom debuted, Edina and Patsy arrive on the big screen...

Central Intelligence Movie Review

Central Intelligence Movie Review

After teaming up with Will Ferrell for Get Hard and Ice Cube for two Ride...

The Colony [Colonia] Movie Review

The Colony [Colonia] Movie Review

Based on a true story, this Chilean drama has a chilling edge to it that's...

Independence Day: Resurgence Movie Review

Independence Day: Resurgence Movie Review

Two decades is a long time to wait for a sequel, especially one starring much...

Elvis & Nixon Movie Review

Elvis & Nixon Movie Review

This movie is based on a real meeting between Elvis Presley and Richard Nixon in...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.