Sandy Patterson (Jason Bateman) falls victim to what may be the biggest thing that we fear in todays electronic age: having our identity stollen. He is shocked when police come after him after he misses his court date in Miami…where he’s never been. In order to clear his name, Sandy has to take the law into his own hands since the police clearly state that they’re not going to get off of their asses and help. Now he has to fly to Miami and convince Diana (Melissa McCarthy), who took over his gender-neutral name, to come back with him to Denver (his home city) to clear his name.
If this sounds like a traveling buddy-film…you nailed it on the head. Almost every staple in mixed-matched buddy movies is found here. Sandy is rigid and all of his reactions are straight, Diana is the party girl who creates chaos. Such as having assassins chase after her. This creates wacky car chases, gun fights, and you already know the rest. In other words, plot wise, Identity Thief steals everything from other buddy movies.
There is no reason why I should find Identity Thief enjoyable. Yet due to both Bateman’s and McCarthy’s performance I do. The comical timing between these two is perfect. Bateman delivers a performance where it’s easy to bounce lines off of him. McCarthy surprisingly had me chuckling at slapstick moments (I normally don’t even crack a smile at that style of humor) as well as bringing in some heart-felt moments. Sure the moments felt forced (mostly from the lackluster script) but still helped flesh out the relationship between these two actors.
The Bottom Line: If you’re a fan of Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy then renting Identity Thief (don’t buy it) is worth it…just don’t expect a novel comedy here.