What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this film contains a great deal of cartoon violence. There are shootouts, some bloodshed, and a death off screen. Property is destroyed without consequence. A man is shown with a car muffler protruding from his behind. A condom is exposed briefly in a balloon gag. Several shots focus on a woman's cleavage and jokes intimating sex are numerous.
What's the story?
In THE MASK, Jim Carrey plays Stanley Ipkiss, a bashful bank teller who aside from his dog Milo, lives a very solitary existence. After a particularly humiliating day, Stanley stumbles upon a magical mask that allows him to play out his wildest fantasies. While wearing the mask, Stanley is transformed into a green faced, zoot-suit wearing hepcat that personifies everything he is not -- a confident lady-killer who doesn't take nothing from nobody. His exploits lead him into trouble though, after he pulls a bank job and steals a mob boss' girlfriend (Cameron Diaz). By movie's end, Stanley has gained enough confidence to be himself without the mask, learning a valuable lesson in the process.
Is it any good?
Back in 1994, an unknown ingénue and a seemingly one hit wonder starred in The Mask. The movie went on to become one of the year's biggest blockbusters, securing Jim Carrey's status as a legitimate movie star and launching the career of it-girl Cameron Diaz. Carrey's previous experience in both dramatic and physically comedic roles made him the only choice for this film. The Mask is a perfect vehicle for his abilities to play both a lovable loser and a manic menace. Industrial Light and Magic's special effects are integral to the success of this film. Without them, audiences would have to pay attention to the plot, which is uneven, predictable, and not worth the price of admission alone.
Kids will love this movie. Carrey lives out a child's every fantasy -- destroying things without getting caught, saving the day, and getting the girl. You may rue the day you brought this film into your home when catchphrases like "Smokin!" and "Somebody stop me!" remain in your child's vernacular until his or her next birthday. Still, the film is entertaining and relatively harmless.
Explore, discuss, enjoy
Families can talk about the idea of making judgments about people based on their looks, wealth, and personality. Parents can use this film to discuss setting personal goals toward self-improvement.