Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Walter MittySecret Life of Walter Mitty

I’ll be the first to admit it. I’m scared of this movie. I really am. I’ve watched thousands of horror movies, and the entire series of Faces of Death, and even the closest thing to a snuff film you can get without being a Kennedy, but none of those scare me as much as this movie.

I love the story.
I love Danny Kaye.

I cannot believe no one made Robin Williams redo this movie when he was coming off of Mrs Doubtfire. I’m almost stunned Gene Wilder didn’t do this movie.Walter Mitty Kaye

Hang on. Let me think about Gilda and Gene doing this movie. I’m gonna need a minute. I just hope Mel Brooks didn’t come in and make Madeline Kahn and himself the bad guys. Lets move on, but I’m gonna be upset if this movie isn’t playing in Heaven.

So how does Ben F’N Stiller fit in this? When I think Walter Mitty, I don’t think Ben Stiller. I don’t consider him the next Danny Kaye. Stiller might end up the next Danny Bonaduce before he becomes the next Danny Kaye.

So Yes, I’m scared.
I’m gonna spend the first hour of this movie in full clench mode.

So how is it?

Ok, I have to give Ben Stiller credit. He knows he is no Danny Kaye, and doesn’t try, he doesn’t try and shoehorn the comedy into his personality or force the joke, something he can be really hit or miss on. In this case, the weaker parts of the movie are the actual “Walter Mitty” parts, in fact, once the movie actually starts, there is only one that matters, and you could have called this movie Slide 25 and that one being the only “Mitty” part in the whole movie. I really did enjoy the show. I cannot recommend it highly enough on premium cable or Netflix when you get the chance.

The only part that kinda fails for me is the love interest, we easily could have merged her with his buddy that works with him, and dropped her. I’m sorry, she just doesn’t strike me as someone you pine for from across the room, and it doesn’t help that Stiller seems like he’s got 15 years on her.

Patton Oswalt is always a joy. He’s barely in the movie but he’s the second most important guy, after Stiller himself. I’d love to know what cell service he has.
I’m going a solid 8 on my scale. I don’t think there is a ton of rewatchability or a reason to see this on the big screen. But this is a pleasant surprise, and WELL worth your time.

I got a few issues, but we will get there after the . . .

Spoilers Shead

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  1. I haven’t seen this film, but I am a deep fan of Thurber’s Walter Mitty. Along with the other actors you mentioned to play the daydreamer, I nominate James Stuart for the lead (ala his acting in “Harvey”).

    Does anyone here want to help me make it happen?

  2. “I, I, I don’t know… I mean he’s, he’s, he’s sorta dead and if’n you, you, you meanb you gonna be rasing him from the dead to make this happen… then, then, then wellll… I just don’t, don’t, don’t, know… gosh golly gee…

  3. Joe,

    Do I understand you to say that an actor (or actress) is disqualified for a role in a motion picture because they are dead? I have two issues with this: (1) It clearly discriminates against the nonliving and (2) It is a contradiction to many actors and actresses I have seen recently in films.

    Would you help me gather support for the rights of zombie movie stars?

  4. Well, I did open with wanting to see Gene Wilder in this role up in heaven. I am a HUGE Jimmy Stew fan, but I don’t think he could do the version that Kaye did.

    Watch the movie, and then see if Stewart might have been better in this “version” of the movie. (as long as we didn’t get John Wayne in the Sean Penn role)

  5. We have had films about dead presidents and dead poets and I have seen recent films with what looked like dead actors. Are we on to something here? Whatever we are on to, is it not especially appropriate for Thurber’s Walter Mitty?

  6. Can I take the posting of the “Dead Presidents” poster as a vote for remaking of “Walter Mitty” using a dead president. Who do you think would work best? Thomas Jefferson? Abraham Lincoln? Jack Kennedy?

  7. Yeah, Grant would do for Mitty even if he confined his consumption of whiskey to when he was generaling rather than to when he was presidenting. When he was winning battles, a woman complained about his drinking. Lincoln said, “If I knew the brand, I would send it to all my generals.”

    But if we are considering real-life experience, I nominate Ronnie Reagan who served much of his term with advanced Alzheimer’s.

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