The Secret Life of Walter Mitty Movie Review – Imperfectly Perfect
Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller, who also directs) manages photographs at Life magazine, where he daydreams of a more exciting existence filled with action, adventure, and romance. When the negative for the final issue’s cover photo goes missing, he finally embarks on an actual adventure of his own, searching out the photographer (Sean Penn) in hopes of discovering what happened to it. Along the way he connects with his workplace crush Cheryl (Kristin Wiig), and discovers a newfound sense of life.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is by no means a perfect movie. There’s little chemistry between the two romantic leads, it stops and reboots the primary character’s journey halfway through its nearly two-hour running time, and lasts about 20 minutes longer than necessary.
Surprisingly, in spite of these issues I found myself won over by the film. Its message was affirming (if a little heavy handed), it’s fantastically shot, and Ben Stiller (who also directed) turns in an earnest and likable performance. Though it went on longer than it needed to it managed to never outstay its welcome.
That the film is a labor of love for Ben Stiller is apparent throughout its entirety. He directs the film with the same sense of earnestness that characterizes his performance. Even when you aren’t as invested in the story, you’ll still appreciate everything you’re seeing. From Walter’s daydreams that venture into humorous parodies to the gorgeous cinematography, there’s a lot here to like. Even when your brain tells you that the film’s execution of the story isn’t quite working.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is slightly scattered and uneven, but it’s packaged so well that I enjoyed every minute of it.
• Skip It
• Wait For Cable
• Rent It
• See It In Theaters
• See It In Theaters… Twice