Many people may or may not know this about Jim Carrey, but he was known a while back as one of the fewer actors that refused to make sequels of his movies. There may be others, but from what I can recall, he was one of the more prominent actors that chose not to do this. He has since changed his mind with the possibilities of another “Bruce Almighty” flick as well as the more popular and announced “Dumb and Dumber To“. However, for years he refused, hands down. He first thought a sequel to “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events” would be cool…I’m sure that opened his mind to the possibility that sequels can be good. Anyway, the reason to why he chose never to do another sequel was because of the bad reception and criticism to his first sequel, “Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls“.
This time around, Ace Ventura has retired from he world of pet detective, and has found self-enlightenment with the monks in the Himalayas. However, trouble was sure to find him when Fulton Greenwall (Ian McNeice) shows up with a lucrative task for Ventura. He must find a rare albino bat that is worshipped by two opposing tribes. Out of retirement Ventura comes forth and excepts the task at hand.
This sequel is very interesting in the world of sequels. The movie is so much different than the first, other than the character of Ace, that it really is surprising. That may have been one of the factors that turned critics down at first. I like that though, too many sequels are practically the same film. This, however, only had exactly what it needed, Ace Ventura, a mystery, and animals. To be honest, I think the film is better than the first in more ways than worse. Think about it this way, Ventura is pretty much in his natural habitat, with thousands of animals in the wild…that makes more sense than the first doesn’t it? It does, trust me…I know.
Jim Carrey bounced back into character in this film in a better way than the first. I believed he was funnier in this one, stayed more true and fluent to the character of Ace Ventura in this film than the last, and there was so many more one-liners in this movie than the first. What I have continually noticed is that throughout time, this movie has become more of a guilty pleasure, and nostalgic piece of artwork that simply needed time to get people interested.
What wasn’t so great was the overall feeling of incompleteness. It felt way too quick for it’s own good, as if they could fit a lot more in. The first film had a plot that felt more secure and whole, even though it was technically shorter. Then again, the first felt like it dragged on a bit longer, and wasn’t nearly as funny as this film. Both are nostalgic though, and it is always a treat to watch Jim Carrey in the role that really defined his career. The reason why I think that a lot of sequels get these low ratings, especially if there are only two films in the series, is because the first usually has all the characterization which holds the film in place. I think that too, for the most part. However, Ace Ventura is so widely known nowadays that it doesn’t really matter anymore.
On RT, this film is rated lower than the first on the Tomatometer, and both are rotten. However, on the audience reviews, this film is rated higher than the first because they stop putting in critic scores after so long. Also, the audience score on this is fresh. People like the movie, and for good reason. If the movie was re-released into theaters I can almost guarantee that it would get a higher score rating from critics. This isn’t true for every movie, it’s actually more rare than not, but sometimes movies just get so much better with time, and this is one of those movies.
With a choice between the two movies, I would certainly say watch the second one instead. Check it out!