Meet Dave

by | Nov 27th, 2008 | 2:50PM | Filed under: DVD Reviews

Me again!Long gone are the days when Eddie Murphy would make me double over in laughter until tears streamed down my face.  Coming to America, Beverly Hills Cop and Trading Places are all but distant memories of this once "raw" comedian.  Granted, his voice work as "Donkey" in the Shrek franchise has been brilliant, but it doesn’t require Eddie himself to be on-screen.  Thanks to The Nutty Professor films and Norbit, it’s hard for me to even picture him without a fat suit on.

Therefore, understandably, I had the lowest of low expectations for Meet Dave.  In fact, I dreaded watching it and wasting ninety minutes of my life on the story of an alien spacecraft in the form of a man named "Dave Ming-Chang," who is actually powered by tiny human-looking aliens.

However, maybe it was because I was overly tired, or perhaps the surprise of seeing a lot of recognizable faces in the cast clouded my judgment, but Meet Dave wasn’t half-bad.  Yes, it was silly and met its quota of lame jokes and tired Eddie Murphy expressions, but it’s certainly not the worst family film I’ve seen over the last few months.  If you’re intrigued by the fact that I’m perhaps the only person who hasn’t lambasted this film in a review, read on…

Wazzup? After the Dave vessel crashes on Earth, it’s befriended by single mother Gina (Elizabeth Banks) and her son Josh (Austin Lynd Myers).  Dave needs to act increasingly human in order to successfully complete his mission, which involves gathering a certain substance that will help save his home planet of Nil.  Will the aliens let their growing attachment to Gina and Josh distract them from their goals?  Hmm, what do you think?  It wouldn’t be a family film if our planet ends up getting annihilated…

Before popping this one in my DVD player, I was unaware that Banks had a starring role, so imagine my shock at seeing this actress who’s been the talk of the town for her performances in W., Zack and Miri Make a Porno and Role Models, suddenly salsa-dancing with Eddie Murphy in a PG-rated flick.  I did a double-take and then headed to the Internet to make absolutely sure it was her!

There are also a slew of other expert bit players that pop up over the course of the film, and their mere presence outweighed some of the ridiculous dialogue and forced plot points that would have otherwise grown too tedious to bear. 

The trailer below will give you a good feel for the film… judge for yourself whether I am insane for thinking that Meet Dave was not only watchable but also slightly enjoyable…

So have I lost my mind?  Once again, I’m not saying that Meet Dave is brilliant, or that it’s on the same level as Eddie’s achievements of decades past… heck, I’m not even saying it’s good.  I’m simply stating that if you are under the impression that Meet Dave must surely be a train wreck, you might be pleasantly surprised.  I wouldn’t rent this one if you don’t have children to watch it with, however, because it’s definitely more of a family film than something an adult or a couple would find worthwhile.  But it has a few redeeming qualities, and, best of all, no one is in a fat suit!

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