I asked you to stop me. I begged you. Please, I said, give me another movie to see, any movie. But you are a heartless and cruel people, and you revel in my suffering.

I saw The Cable Guy.

Actually, it's best that I do this before you. I'm a trained professional, and am qualified to handle these situations, you are a defenseless audience, and can fall prey to such evil. I took the pain so you won't have to.

Are you starting to catch my drift?

As I approached the theater, I repeated my mantra in my head. "This is not just a Jim Carrey movie. This is not just a Jim Carrey movie. This is not just a Jim Carrey movie." It had Matthew Broderick and was directed by Ben Stiller. How could it go wrong?

It found a way.

And you know what, it was just a Jim Carrey movie.

The story is even simpler than Twister. Jim is a Cable Guy who becomes obsessed with Matthew. And hilarity ensues.

Problem is, hilarity does not ensue. It is dull, tired, and sad. I almost wanted to leave the theater, but my arms were stuck to the chair thanks to somebody's well-placed gum.

Now don't just think that I don't like Jim Carrey. He has been funny. But it's getting old. In Ace Ventura, Jim's wackiness seemed to be rooted in the character. I felt that the things he did fit with who he was, and I believed him. In The Cable Guy, it's I'd sooner believe OJ than Jim's acting. I get the feeling that the script read something like:

JIM: I'm the cable guy!!!

MATTHEW: Oh no, he's the cable guy!

(Jim mugs for camera. Mimics famous celebrity. Mugs again.)

After that, the movie is... well, it isn't much. Basically, they called a bunch of actors, gave them a script, and said, just stay out of Jim's way and the thing'll make money.

But it wasn't a total loss. I did laugh once or twice, which for a dramatic epic is good, but for the rock-em sock-em comedy of the summer is very bad. There is a scene at Medieval Times which is outstanding. It involves jousting and the fight theme from Star Trek, and any scene which incorporates the fight theme from Star Trek is a treat. There is also a cute Karoke number and Jim has a great line. "The problem with real life? No danger music! Dum-de-dum! Dum-de-dum-de-dum!"

But you could squeeze the good bits into a fifteen minute short and still feel cheated.

The script is actually not as bad as most of the summer's scripts. Which isn't surprising. Can't have plot holes in movies without plots.

The direction is nice and solid. Nothing new, nothing wrong. The other actors do what other actors do and leave the comedy to the professionals.

And the professionals did a lot of mugging.

Actually, the funniest part of this movie is the side trial that runs during the movie. Ben Stiller plays a child star accused of murdering his twin brother. And the UPN television movie based on the trial starring Eric Roberts.

With this thread, Stiller wanted to root the message of the movie, that television rules our life. He plays with this again later in the film and kinda tosses it in your face. But I wanted to know why. Why are we being given a message in a Jim Carrey movie? The last message we got from Jim Carrey was that speaking through your butt is funny.

In all, a bad film. Boring, long, and unfunny. You just don't ever like Jim's character. Sure he makes silly faces, talks with a lisp and slams a basketball, but you don't like him, and you just wish, as Matthew's character does, that he'd just leave us alone.

This gets 1 Babylon. I was going to give it less, but the Medieval Times scene alone is worth a point.

They should have just lopped Jim's head off at the end of the scene and we could've all gone home.

From deep in the San Bernadino Mountains,

This has been,

The Self-Made Critic

Boy, I saw some lousy movies this weekend.

Next weekend better not suck.

If it does, I'm blaming you.

Thought you should know.