Rating: 1.5 stars
Mike Myers is a funny guy. He made three awesomely funny Austin Powers movies (I’m partial to the second—when Mini Me was introduced and joined Dr. Evil in a rendition of Will Smith’s Just the Two of Us) and had several funny SNL sketches, even if some of his characters (I’m talking to you, Wayne!) went on beyond their expiration date.
The Love Guru, in which Myers plays a would-be Deepok Chopra hired by the owner of a hockey team (Jessica Alba) to help her star player (Romany Malco) get out of his funk, actually has some funny moments. The film starts, for example, with a Morgan Freeman voiceover, only to reveal that it’s just the Love Guru using a Morgan Freeman voiceover machine (hey, where can I get one of those?). Some jokes are at the expense of Myer’s miniature cohort Verne Troyer, here playing the team’s coach. (“I’d like to thank the Academy,” intones the Guru, lifting the little guy like a statue.) But for every funny joke in The Love Guru there are at least 10 stupendously bad ones. I’m talking poo jokes and crotch jokes and jokes about elephants getting it on. (This is the kind of material that makes an Adam Sandler film seem like a Noel Coward play). What’s more, Myers doesn’t even have the strength of his own convictions. In the excellent Leap of Faith, Steve Martin played a gleefully corrupt faith healer who credibly found his conscience by the film’s end. But Myers’ Guru Pitka is a sweet guy the whole time. He may be status-conscious and money-grubbing (he trademarks and acronyms all of his bits of holy wisdom), but he actually . . . cares. Wow, how daring.