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‘Sure to steal laughs’

Logan Qualls | reporter

If forced to use only one word to describe this film, that word would be outrageous. Flying from one crazy situation to the next, “Identity Thief” takes the audience for quite a ride.
Sandy Bigelow Patterson (Jason Bateman, “Arrested Development”) is a loving husband and father of two girls. He has recently received a promotion, his wife is pregnant and all seems well. That changes one fateful morning when Diana (Melissa McCarthy, “Mike and Molly”) steals his identity.
Only after Sandy is arrested for a crime that he did not commit does he realize what has happened. With his job on the line, he follows a lead and flies from Denver, Colo., to Winter Park, Fla., to look for the woman who stole his identity. As soon as Diana and Sandy meet, the real fun begins.
Unexpected circumstances force the two to drive back to Denver and the race is on. With more than one party on their tail, the unlikely duo work together to keep one step ahead of their pursuers. identitytheftmccarthy
The film’s main drawback is the cast, which also serves as its saving grace. The film relies so heavily upon the humor from the leads, Bateman and McCarthy, that the rest of the cast (“Harold and Kumar”’s John Cho and rapper T.I. among others) sometimes seems to fall short. The chaotic plot can feel disorganized and sluggish between laughs.
The film’s success is due in large part to the comedic talents of Bateman and McCarthy. Jason Bateman has a dry sense of humor that compliments the antics of McCarthy, to whom he plays the foil. Their humor helps drive the often-unbelievable plot forward.
For those who enjoyed Melissa McCarthy in “Bridesmaids,” “Identity Thief” will not disappoint. McCarthy will have the audience guessing what’s going to happen next as the absolutely ridiculous Diana, but also has solemn moments that bring a bit of reality to her fantastic character.
Judging from the riotous laughter erupting from the audience, this movie accomplished what it set out to do despite the muddled plot progression. Beyond that, time flies by as the viewer follows Sandy and Diana on this wild adventure.
Filled with hilarity, “Identity Thief” is sure to steal some laughs from the audience.

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