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Norbit (R)





Release Date: February 9th, 2007 by Paramount Pictures.
The Cast: Eddie Murphy, Thandie Newton, Eddie Griffin, Terry Crews, Clifton Powell, Cuba Gooding, Jr.
Directed by Brian Robbins.

BASIC PREMISE: Norbit (Murphy) falls out of love with his mean, obese wife, Rasputia (Murphy), when Kate (Newton), his childhood sweetheart, moves into town.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Essentially a one-joke movie, Norbit relies on the comedic talent of Eddie Murphy as the title character, his wife and his father, Mr.Wong, who adopts him as a baby. The opening scenes introduce how Norbit meets Rasputia, who saves him from being bullied and derided at during school, becomes his friend. Once he ties the knot with her, thatís when his life goes downhill as she controls and watches his every move and even physically abuses himósheís like a very cruel tyrant. His childhood girlfriend, Kate, shows up, which gives him the opportunity to escape from Rasputia, but he also has to deal with the obstacle of Kateís fiancť (Gooding, Jr.). Itís alright that the plot is predictable, but, unfortunately, too many scenes seem either too over-the-top, juvenile or just plain disgusting without any original or refreshing humor. How funny is it to watch somebody passing gas for the umpteenth time in a comedy? Rasputiaís exaggerated obesity and its consequences seems somewhat funny at first, like when she honks her carís horn with her giant breasts just by moving around a bit in the driverís seat. However, the repetition of this and other fat jokes for the remainder of the film simply falls flat. Eddie Murphy certainly adds some liveliness and energy in his three roles and the make-up of him as Rasputia and Mr.Wong looks amazingly real. Too bad Norbit isnít nearly as funny as the far superior, refreshing and hilarious film, The Nutty Professor.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: None is required or desired.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: None, as long as you check your brain at the door.

NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 4

IN A NUTSHELL: Mostly juvenile, unfunny and disgusting despite Eddie Murphyís three energetic performances.

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: TV


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