Kangaroo Jack (2003) starring Jerry O'Connell, Anthony Anderson, Estella Warren, Christopher Walken, Marton Csokas, Dyan Cannon, Michael Shannon, Bill Hunter directed by David McNally Movie Review

Kangaroo Jack (2003)   2/52/52/52/52/5

Jerry O'Connell and Anthony Anderson in Kangaroo Jack

Roo & Jerry

This has to be a mistake and I am not just talking about the movie as looking at the box office figures on wikipedia for "Kangaroo Jack" it basically made a $28,000,000 profit. How this movie made a profit is beyond me because it is stupid and not stupid of the funny kind. And that is not it's only problem as it seems confused as to who its target audience is, it looks like a kiddies movie but it is full of sexual innuendo. Maybe the trailer made it look good, maybe audiences were duped into seeing it, I don't know but if this is what audiences want to watch well I might as well quit watching movies all together.

Ever since Louis (Anthony Anderson - Transformers) saved Charlie (Jerry O'Connell - Can't Hardly Wait) from drowning when they were kids they have been best friends and Charlie has always been there to help Louis out of gratitude for saving his life all those years ago. But thanks to Louis' strange ability to get in to trouble they two of them fall foul of gangster Sal Maggio (Christopher Walken), Charlie's step dad and find themselves heading to Australia to deliver an envelope stuffed with cash to get back in his good books. Except whilst there Louis puts his lucky red jacket on a Kangaroo they thought was dead and before they know the kangaroo has bounded off with his jacket and the cash which is in the pocket. With gangsters wanting their money Charlie and Louis must track down this kangaroo before time runs out.

Jerry O'Connell as Charlie Carbone in Kangaroo Jack

At its heart "Kangaroo Jack" is a buddy movie, childhood friends who have grown up together find themselves in a shed load of trouble when they upset a gangster. And as such we watch these two friends get in to various moments of trouble as they head to Australia to try and get out of trouble. So we have them argue, they crash their jeep, before that they get chased by police oh and of course they put a coat on what they think is a dead kangaroo, as you would, and lose an envelope of money. It's simple and both obvious and in a way that isn't really an issue as there are a lot of buddy movies which trade on similar ideas of slapstick and trouble and manage to make you laugh.

But the trouble is that all of this trouble and slapstick is so stupid that it is just bad. Take the scene where they take photos of themselves with the kangaroo they think is dead, it's simply stupid and that is not the worst of it as there is a dream sequence where the kangaroo speaks. Maybe young audiences will find this funny, they will enjoy the stereotypical arguing between Louis and Charlie whist cracking up at all the trouble they get in to from police chases to crashing a plane.

But here is the thing, yes there is a lot of humour which young children will love, heck the CGI manipulated kangaroo has quite a cute thing going on, but then there is the more adult side of the fun and by that I am on about blatant sexual innuendo. This isn't cleverly disguised innuendo, this is in your face innuendo with a gag with Charlie and Louis in the toilet on the plane whilst people listen in and think they are up to something and then there is the camera focussing on a woman's shapely breasts. This sort of humour is good, in a more adult comedy, but "Kangaroo Jack" plays like a kiddie movie and whilst you don't see anything it certainly doesn't disguise it. It means that "Kangaroo Jack" ends up seriously unfocused trying to please both young and old alike but with out the skill to blend the two sides.

As for the acting well the most impressive thing is that both Christopher Walken and the great Bill Hunter appear because beyond that we have Jerry O'Connell and Anthony Anderson playing empty stereotypes. And alongside O'Connell and Anderson you have Estella Warren adding a lot of beauty. As a kiddie movie the acting works, as anything else well it's over the top and often stupid.

What this all boils down to is that I just don't get "Kangaroo Jack", I don't get how it made a profit because this is a bad movie. It's bad because it is unfocussed and totally stupid with humour which young children will enjoy then sexual innuendo thrown in without any attempts to disguise it.