Movie Plot – The Mask: Stanley Ipkiss is a nice bank clerk who finds a mask that gives him mysterious powers.
Director: Chuck Russell
Writers: Mike Werb, Michael Fallon, Mark Verheiden
Cast: Jim Carrey, Cameron Diaz, Peter Riegert
1994 was a good year for Jim Carrey with hits like Ace Ventura, Dumb and Dumber and this live action cartoon. And with his elastic facial expressions he was of course very suitable for The Mask. I myself was more familiar with the cartoon series that appeared a year after this film. That series was with Rob Paulsen as Stanley Ipkiss/The Mask.
In this film, Carrey plays the nerd Ipkiss, although you can see that he can hardly hold back, even as Ipkiss he already pulls some weird faces, which we are used to from him. But that’s nothing compared to what he does when he puts on the mask, then he goes – just like the movie – completely loose.
From Ipkiss to The mask
The first half hour of The Mask is all about Stanley and his uncertainty. The bank employee is easily fooled by his colleagues, a night out runs into a fiasco if he does not dare to stand up for himself and even helping the beautiful Tina (Cameron Diaz) to open her bank account is almost impossible task. The missteps are cheesy, but they’re so 90s. But that changes when one evening he finds a mysterious mask!
The mask transforms Stanley into a hilarious character who knows no boundaries and has special powers. These powers are not much inferior to those of a fictional cartoon character. And no one can play a cartoony character better then Jim Carrey. However, Stanley uses his newly acquired powers not to fight crime, but to take revenge on his boss, to teach the crooks at the local garage a lesson and to impress the beautiful Tina! But soon the fun is short-lived when he gets himself into trouble with the dangerous criminal and Tina’s boyfriend Dorian (Peter Greene).
90s comedy at its best!
The Mask is a wonderful comedy with a lot of humor. It’s mainly the slapstick moments that provide the fun, but also the romantic undertone is very nice. It makes the movie light-hearted while the special and visual effects are very cool. A nice example is the transformation of Stanley’s Jack Russell Milo when the dog accidentally pushes his head into the mask. And Jim Carrey is the perfect choice to play this role. The comedian does great in his double role as the gentle Stanley and the exuberant character The Mask.
The 90 vibe can be felt throughout the film. And certainly with Jim Carrey as the protagonist in his golden years. If ever a reboot was made for this, I reckon they should keep the 90s feeling. It totally fits the character.
Jim Carrey: hate him or love him… I can always appreciate him, whether in a more serious role like The Truman Show, or in the more cartoon-like humour we get here in the Mask. Carrey is cut out for the role of the extravagant character.
The Mask is a film you shouldn’t take too seriously, even though some morality is tapped into (be yourself, embrace your identity, etc). This film does exactly what you can expect from it: a smooth and humorous movie night.