The Number 23 Review

Poster Art Country : USA
Year: 2007
Genre: Thriller
Format: Cinema
Running Time: 95 minutes
Distributor: New Line Cinema

A mysterious book sets Jim Carrey upon a journey of self-awakening which just may hold the key to his own inevitable mortality in this new thriller directed by Joel Schumacher....

Directed by Joel Schumacher. Written by Fernley Phillips. Starring Jim Carrey, Virginia Madsen and Logan Lerman.

Everybody get ready for a new round of Ace Ventura: Death Detective! Well not, really... but about halfway through The Number 23, I wished I was watching Ace Ventura 3.

The Number 23 has an interesting premise. Jim Carrey gets this book called "The Number 23" that is about a guy who lets the number control his life. As he reads the book, he starts picking out minor details and comparing things to his own life, and of course, everything adds up to 23. As he reads the book, the more he reads, the more he thinks that the book is about him. Slowly but surely, he starts going totally insane, taking all those around him straight to hell.

Carrey pulls off that he is paranoid, says he is hearing and seeing things, will not go to work, and has a great desire to read the book. As he slips deeper and deeper into his personal abyss, the strain on his marriage increases. He must somehow figure out what is going on, and stop whatever it is to save himself and his marriage.

Superficially, The Number 23 resembles Stir of Echoes and The Sixth Sense in the sense that yes, we have seen this story before and I was expecting SO much more. Going in thinking this was actually a horror film, I guess I was more let down that it is actually more of a psychological thriller.

There really is nothing new about this movie. Though you aren't told where the movie is going, about midway through the movie, you can guess everything that is going to happen.

Joel Schumacher does manage to keep the suspense at a decent level, so interest is rarely lost. Carrey does okay, but over acts way to much. He makes all of Walter Sparrow's strange behavior seem totally out of the ordinary, and Virginia Madsen does well as the mystified wife trying to keep her marriage together. The special effects are really annoying, with CG camera angles left and right. To me, this is NOT really filmmaking people. Anyone can program a computer to get the perfect shot....so let's try to be a little more creative.

All together a major let down for me, but if I actually went in expecting nothing, then I might have liked it a little more. I may give it another shot on DVD, but I suggest you just wait for that disc yourself. It would serve better for a couch session on a Saturday afternoon.


Review by John Gray, for Pitofhorror.com

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