The Secret Life of Walter Mitty – 5/10

A man who leads a boring life but constantly day dreams about exciting and bizarre scenarios is inspired to live out his dreams for real (ugh).


Ben Stiller directs and stars in Walter Mitty. Stiller actually has decent form as a director, with cult classics Zoolander, Tropic Thunder and my favourite The Cable Guy but Walter Mitty is a rotten, turgid affair. The sickening and near constant product placement of dating site eharmony leaves a bad taste in the mouth for a start.

Walter Mitty sets out to be an inspirational epic in the style of Forrest Gump (mentioned in the movies advertising), The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (directly referenced in the film) or Pursuit of Happyness (also written by Steve Conrad) but in the end it isn’t half as good as any of them. There is no real character development or journey as such, nor is there an explanation for the protagonists sudden change in character.

Kristen Wiig is totally wasted in her role as Walters muse (he seems to change his life based on about 15 minutes spent in the company of Cheryl, Wiig’s character). Some of the early daydream sequences are mildly amusing but it is nothing that we haven’t seen done much better and ten years ago on Scrubs.

If you are the kind of person who enjoyed The Help or who cries at the emotional stories on X Factor then give Walter Mitty a go, you will probably enjoy it. For everyone else watch something properly inspiring like Silver Linings Playbook instead.

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