Yes Man is about leaving one’s comfort zone, trying new experiences and enjoying the untapped possibilities of life. It’s puzzling, then, that the movie doesn’t practice what it preaches. How frustrating that it remains content to follow such a conventional route.
That’s not to say the supporting cast isn’t excellent. New Zealander Rhys Darby (Murray from Flight of the Conchords) plays a typical nerdy boss character (the type you could imagine Rick Moranis playing in the ’80s), but gives it a unique spin with his relaxed delivery and gift for improvisation. Hollywood indie chick Zooey Deschanel is equally endearing as Allison, the sort of free-spirited music-and-photography girl you wish was in movies more.
But without these two scene-stealing actors, the movie sags. Even Jim Carrey is in poor form. His endless facial mugging and physical slapstick seems lazy and obvious. The climactic event, intended to raise the stakes, is ludicrous and, for that, disappointing. It’s as if the scriptwriters (of which there were three) couldn’t really be f***ed working out how to end the premise, said ‘this will probably do’, and hoped that nobody would really care.
Well I did care. Darby and Deschanel deserve praise, but they’re stuck in a so-so film. I hope they get offered better projects in the future.