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

Cars 3 Movie Review

Cars 3 Movie Review

It's been six years since the last Cars movie (there were two Planes movies in...

The Beguiled Movie Review

The Beguiled Movie Review

In her inimitable loose style, Sofia Coppola remakes the 1971 Clint Eastwood movie from a...

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

The surprisingly thoughtful prequel trilogy comes to a powerful conclusion with this robust, dramatic thriller,...

It Comes At Night Movie Review

It Comes At Night Movie Review

This sharply original horror film not only approaches its premise from an unexpected angle, but...

Okja Movie Review

Okja Movie Review

As Tilda Swinton reteams with her Snowpiercer director, Korea's Bong Joon Ho, it's perhaps unsurprising...

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

This may be the third reboot of this franchise in 15 years, risking audience exhaustion,...

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Actually the fourth film in the series (don't forget the prequel Minions), this animated super-villain...

Advertisement
Baby Driver Movie Review

Baby Driver Movie Review

Wildly energetic and so cool it hurts, this action movie has been put together in...

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

There's a clear sense that this Tupac Shakur biopic is hoping to build on the...

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...

Churchill Movie Review

Churchill Movie Review

This drama about the iconic British prime minister tells a darkly personal story set over...

Gifted Movie Review

Gifted Movie Review

This is one of those films that dances right up to the edge of soapy...

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.