“The Whole Nine Yards” stars Bruce Willis, Rosanna Arquette, Michæl Clarke Duncan, Amanda Peete, Natasha Henstridge and Matthew Perry and is directed by Jonathan Lynn. With such innovations to the realm of comedy as “Trial and Error”, “Nuns on the Run” and “Greedy” (not to mention “The Distinguished Gentleman” and “Sgt. Bilko”), as a viewer, we have come to expect high quality from the talents of slapstick helmer Lynn. Or perhaps he is just a third rate hack who directs fourth rate scripts. While the latter may be the case, this is still no excuse for this deplorably unfunny film.
Bruce Willis is “Jimmy ‘the Tulip’ Tudeski”, a mob hitman who has just moved next door to the town punching bag, Nick “Oz” Oseransky (Matthew Perry). One would think that these zany nicknames would be enough to divert your box-office dollars elsewhere, but wait, there is more. Once Nick recognizes who his new neighbor really is, all of the humor that is standard from a Jonathan Lynn film is unleashed with a fury. There are misunderstandings, coincidences and the always humorous … people running into glass doors … all this film needs is a character slipping on a some sort of wet substance (ex. blood, bananas, urine) and it would own every slapstick cliché imaginable.
If there is one turd who shines above the other turds, it is the stunning Jill (Amanda Peete) whose nude scenes make the ludicrous finale almost tolerable. As for Matthew Perry … well, he is just happy to be continuing in the ranks of the “Friends who bomb on the big screen” Club. Remember … “Friends” movies without the word “Scream” in the title, tend to bomb. Avoid this film so that this streak will remain.