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Night At The Museum [Blu-ray]
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Comedy starring Ben Stiller, Robin Williams, Mickey Rooney and Dick Van Dyke. Larry Daley (Stiller) is a kind-hearted dreamer who always knew that he was destined for greatness, he just never quite knew how. None of his ideas or inventions have panned out so, with a heavy heart, he takes a regular job as a lowly graveyard-shift security guard at the Museum of Natural History in order to provide a more stable life for himself and his ten-year-old son, Nick (Jake Cherry). On his first night on the job, however, he finds that guardianship of the museum is far from stable. At nightfall an Egyptian spell brings the artifacts and wax figures to life. With Attila the Hun (Patrick Gallagher) charging to war through the hallways, the diorama miniatures embroiled in a deadly feud, and a two-ton Tyrannosaurus Rex nagging to play fetch, Larry turns to a wax replica of President Roosevelt (Williams) for a little advice on keeping things intact.
An irresistible concept meets computer-generated wonders in Night at the Museum, inspired by a 1993 children's book by Milan Trenc. Ben Stiller stars as Larry Daley, an underachieving inventor waiting for his ship to come in while getting evicted from one apartment after another for lack of funds. Larry's son needs some stability, so the well-meaning ne'er-do-well takes a job as night watchman at New York City's Museum of Natural History. What the soon-to-retire guards (Dick Van Dyke, Mickey Rooney, Bill Cobbs) don't tell him is that an ancient pharaoh's tablet in the museum causes everything on display to come to life at night. Thus, Larry meets representations of Teddy Roosevelt, Attila the Hun, fire-worshipping cavemen, and Roman Empire soldiers, and learns to cope with an excitable T-Rex and man-eating, ancient animals. The film might have left things at that, but an added story element gives Night at the Museum some extra urgency and excitement, especially for kids: Larry becomes responsible for keeping this nightly miracle going and preventing anything in the museum from dying due to exposure to sunrise. Computer effects, as well as wildly imaginative costumes and makeup, help make the film appeal to the 8-year-old in everyone. Director Shawn Levy (The Pink Panther) works with a hugely talented cast, including Robin Williams, Owen Wilson, Ricky Gervais, Carla Gugino, and Steve Coogan. --Tom Keogh --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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At the urging of his ex-wife (Kim Raver), Larry decides to get a steady job to help put stability into his son's life. The only job the employment agency thinks he is qualified for is night guard at the museum. There, he will be replacing three old guards (Dick van Dyke, Mickey Rooney, and Bill Cobbs) who are being downsized due to budget cutbacks.
His first night on the job, he's in for a surprise. Between dusk and dawn, the entire collection of the museum comes to life. Suddenly, he finds himself dealing with everything from a dinosaur skeleton that wants to play catch to Teddy Roosevelt (Robin Williams). The animals in the African display want to eat him or take his keys. And in the diorama room, it's not Cowboys verses Indians, but Cowboys verses Romans. Larry has no clue how to deal with all this nonsense. Will he find a way or will he quit when the going gets tough like he always does?
When the trailers started showing up for this movie this summer, I couldn't wait to see this film. Fortunately, I was rewarded with a fun flick. There's lots of humor from the premise and Larry's attempts to deal with things only makes things funnier. While there are a couple momentarily scare scenes, the majority of them are played for laughs, so only the most easily frightened will be scared by it.
Ben Stiller is perfect as Larry, and the rest of the cast is great as well. I especially liked seeing Dick van Dyke on the big screen again. Owen Wilson and Steve are perfect as the leaders of the Cowboys and Romans. They play off each other perfectly.
These days, we are used to great special effects, and this movie is no exception. Yet they are part of the story and never take over.
The movie's only flaw is the story. The themes are familiar, but since there are so many of them, they get short changed. Taking out one would have made for a stronger film since the rest of them would have been better developed. And there's a third act plot twist and needed a better set up earlier in the film. Still, these are minor complaints.
While the story could have been a little better, that's a minor quibble. For the most part, this is exactly what it sets out to be, fun entertainment the entire family will enjoy.
It really didn't appeal to me and after buying the book, it still didn't appeal.
I rented it though so I could see what my dad was on about. It was brilliant. We watched it with our kids and my mother-in-law, (who always falls asleep watching t.v. in the evening!) and we all loved it, especially my mother-in law who stayed awake throughout and that was a miracle!!!
It just had something that appealed to everybody. It was hilarious and touching.
Don't miss it. If you do, you'll always regret it.
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