A Night at the Museum…quite unlike being in Hell.
I read a recent review that described “A Night at the Museum” as being comparable to spending two hours in hell. I guess we all have different mental pictures of what spending two hours in hell would be like. Pitchforks poking, fire blazing, …Ben Stiller doing his now classic bumbling fool for all eternity? Not quite.
A Night at the Museum is a great holiday flick! A holiday film that was actually age appropriate for my 10 year old niece. Perhaps some critics thought that it lacked edge. They’re right, but there are films and there are movies. Make the decision to go see a movie and don’t expect an edge for once. So the T-Rex doesn’t rip anyone’s head off? So what? If you want a bloodbath, rent King Kong. This film was bold enough to go for something we don’t often see anymore. Fun. Straightforward. Slapstick. Pardon my simplicity, but when’s the last time you saw someone fall down and didn’t laugh? Then how, pray tell, could you resist Ben Stiller being slapped by a monkey?
Not to mention, any film featuring Dick Van Dyke and Mickey Rooney must be given a fair shot. This is what I call a gateway movie. This is a movie you take your niece or nephew to see. When they laugh at the “old security guards”, you tell them about Mary Poppins and Babes on Broadway. When they giggle at all the miniatures fighting each other, you show them Gulliver’s Travels. When they tell you they liked this dinosaur better than the ones in Jurassic Park because “this one’s nicer”…you show them Baby. That’s what is so great about this film…it hearkens back. When’s the last time you saw a film that hearkened?
It was refreshing to be able to sit down and just enjoy. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not calling the movie simple or weightless. There is nothing fun about sitting down and watching a disjointed or patronizing movie. But leave the pretension and disappointment to the hardened film critics on this one. It’s Christmas…take a mental break. Leave the house and Aunt Betsy’s constant criticisms of your sugar cookies and housekeeping abilities. Not that I’m getting personal here… Let go for a minute and go see this movie. Oh, and take a kid. They’ll appreciate it. Because on top of it all, A Night at the Museum has something most films today wouldn’t dream of attempting. A sense of innocence and a sense of wonder. It treats us like we’re all kids, and for two hours sitting beside my niece, I really felt like one.