What's The Worst That Could Happen?

"OK"

What's The Worst That Could Happen? Review


Martin Lawrence and Danny Devito -- two stars with pretty shaky comedy credits of late -- seem to be tempting fate with the title of their new criminal vs. corporate scoundrel caper. It's called "What's the Worst That Could Happen?" and the answer to that question is, the entire movie could have been as dim-witted and haphazard as its last five minutes.

But until director Sam Weisman ("George of the Jungle," "The Out-of-Tonwers" remake) starts running out of story and grasping at straws in the middle of the last act, it's pretty generous with the laughs.

Lawrence plays a professional cat burglar who hears on the news that a media tycoon (DeVito) has been ordered to vacate one of his mansions as part of a bankruptcy proceeding. Lawrence imagines easy pickings at a plush billionaire's pad that's guaranteed to be uninhabited. Little does he know that DeVito has figured on sneaking into the empty house to cheat on his snooty, country club wife (Nora Dunn) with a buxom centerfold sucking up to him for a job at his TV network.

Catching him with an armload of loot, DeVito has Lawrence arrested. Then just because he's a cad and wants to rub it in a little, the billionaire grabs a garish ring off Lawrence's finger, insisting it was stolen as well. I mean, who are the cops going to believe?

But the ring was Lawrence's lucky charm, and a present from his girlfriend (Carmen Ejogo). So he'll be damned if he's going to let DeVito keep it. He escapes from the cops and sets off on an antic, escalating mission to get the bobble back.

Lawrence and DeVito -- who is determined to keep the ring as a spoil of war -- have superb chemistry as comedic combatants, and their determination to out-smart each other is what drives the plot. Lawrence crashes a banquet honoring DeVito's wife but fails get the ring back after embarrassing his nemesis. Next he breaks into DeVito's condo, and again has no luck. Soon he's following the man to Washington, D.C., where DeVito is to face a Senate hearing looking into corruption in his monopoly media empire. DeVito is as crooked as a dog's leg, and Lawrence has a hay day wreaking havoc on his plans to bribe legislators.

"What's the Worst" is very uneven and veers into some of its least plausible schtick during these scenes. But even when the plot gets stretched to accommodate unnecessarily stupid gimmicks and has to BS its way to a conclusion, it stays reliably funny because of the cast.

Without losing his edge, Lawrence forgoes some of his stereotypical loudmouth routine, offering up a little more character instead. DeVito is perfectly cast as a slimeball materialist. And these two are backed by some of the funniest B-players in the business.

DeVito's lackeys include Glenne Headly ("Dick Tracy," "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels") and Larry Miller (the university president in the "Nutty Professor" remakes). On Lawrence's side there's Leguizamo, stand-up comic Bernie Mac, Ana Gasteyer (one of the few funny people on "Saturday Night Live") and the hilarious Siobhan Fallon (the cynical secretary in "The Negotiator" and the farm wife whose husband becomes a bug in "Men In Black").The most off-the-wall character in the movie, though, is the detective investigating the burglaries. He's a very fey dandy with a walking stick, a flamboyant wardrobe and about an inch of foundation on his effeminate face -- and frankly, the character is in pretty poor taste. But idiosyncratically creepy actor William Fichtner ("The Perfect Storm," "Go," "Contact") is so whimsically weird in the part, you just have to laugh.

"What's the Worst" isn't a great comedy by any stretch of the imagination, and it keeps going long after it runs out of story. But it definitely has five bucks worth of matinee mirth for a lazy summer afternoon.



What's The Worst That Could Happen?

Facts and Figures

Run time: 94 mins

In Theaters: Friday 1st June 2001

Box Office USA: $31.1M

Distributed by: MGM

Production compaines: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 10%
Fresh: 10 Rotten: 88

IMDB: 5.4 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Kevin Caffery, as Max Fairbanks, as Berger, as Gloria Sidell, as Amber Belhaven, as Uncle Jack, as Earl Radburn, as Lutetia Fairbanks, as Detective Alex Tardio, as Walter Greenbaum, as Ann Marie, Sascha Knopf as Tracey Kimberly, as Edwina, Cam Neely as Jerry

Also starring:

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.