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Bruce Almighty is a 2003 American fantasy comedy film directed by Tom Shadyac and written by Steve Koren, Mark O'Keefe and Steve Oedekerk. The film stars Jim Carrey as Bruce Nolan, a down-on-his-luck TV reporter who complains to God (Morgan Freeman) that he is not doing his job correctly, and is offered the chance to try being God himself for one week.

Bruce Almighty
A man with the world attached to his finger by a piece of rosary
Theatrical release poster
Directed byTom Shadyac
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story by
  • Steve Koren
  • Mark O'Keefe
Starring
Music byJohn Debney
CinematographyDean Semler
Edited byScott Hill
Production
company
Distributed byUniversal Pictures (USA)
Buena Vista International (International) [2][3]
Release date
  • May 14, 2003 (2003-05-14) (Hollywood)
  • May 23, 2003 (2003-05-23) (United States)
Running time
101 minutes[4]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$81 million[5]
Box office$484.6 million[5]

The film is Shadyac and Carrey's third collaboration, having previously worked together on Ace Ventura: Pet Detective in 1994 and Liar Liar in 1997. It co-stars Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Ann Walter, Philip Baker Hall and Steve Carell, and received mixed reviews from critics.

When released in American theaters on May 23, 2003, Bruce Almighty opened to $85.9 million, making it the top Memorial Day opening weekend of any film in history at the time.[6] The film surprised film pundits when it beat The Matrix Reloaded the following weekend. By the end of its theatrical run, it made $242 million domestically and a total $484 million worldwide, making it the fifth highest-grossing film of 2003.

Evan Almighty, a spin-off sequel focusing on Carell's character, with Shadyac and Oedekerk returning to direct and write, and Freeman also reprising his role, was released in 2007.

PlotEdit

Bruce Nolan is a television field reporter for Eyewitness News on WKBW-TV in Buffalo, New York but desires to be the news anchorman. When he is passed over for promotion by his rival, Evan Baxter, he becomes furious, his actions leading to his dismissal from the station, followed by a series of misfortunes. Bruce complains to God that "He's the one that should be fired".

Bruce later receives a message on his pager, directing him to an empty warehouse where God meets him. God offers to give Bruce his omniscience to prove that He is doing the job correctly. God tells Bruce that he cannot tell others he has his power, nor can he use the powers to alter free will. Bruce is initially jubilant with the powers, using them for personal gain, such as by getting his job back and impressing his girlfriend Grace Connelly. Bruce finds ways of using the powers to cause miraculous events to occur at otherwise mundane events that he covers, such as discovering Jimmy Hoffa's body or causing a meteor to harmlessly land near a cook-off, earning him the name "Mr. Exclusive". Bruce then causes Evan to embarrass himself on-air, causing Evan to be fired in favor of Bruce as the new anchor.

During this time, Bruce continues to hear voices in his head. He later re-encounters God, who explains the voices are prayers, meant for God, that Bruce must deal with. Bruce creates a computerized email-like system to receive the prayers and respond, but finds that the influx is far too great for him to handle—even though God has stated that Bruce is only receiving prayers from the Buffalo area—and sets the program to automatically answer Yes to every prayer.

Bruce attends a party celebrating his promotion. When Grace arrives, she finds Bruce and his co-anchor Susan Ortega kissing, after she forcefully comes on to him, and quickly leaves. Bruce follows her, trying to use his powers to convince her to stay but cannot influence her free will. As Bruce looks around, he realizes that the city has fallen into chaos due to his actions: Several people think the meteor strike is a sign of the Apocalypse, while others who have prayed to win the multi-million dollar lottery discover they all won reducing their price to a few dollars (mainly $17). A riot ensues due to Bruce's actions. Bruce desperately returns to God, who explains that He can't solve all the problems and Bruce must figure out a way himself. Bruce returns to his computer system and goes about answering prayers as best he can. As he reads through them, he finds a prayer from Grace, wishing for Bruce's success and well-being. As he reads it, another prayer from Grace arrives, this one wishing not to be in love with Bruce anymore.

Bruce is stunned and walks alone on a highway, asking God to take back His powers and letting His fate be in His hands. Bruce is suddenly hit by a truck, and regains consciousness in a white void. God appears, and asks Bruce what he really wants; Bruce admits that he only wants to make sure Grace finds a man that would make her happy. God agrees, and Bruce finds himself in the hospital, shortly after being recovered—near miraculously—by the doctors. Grace arrives and the two rekindle their relationship, with Bruce and Grace later becoming engaged. After his recovery, Bruce returns to his field reporting but takes more pleasure in the simple stories.

CastEdit

ReceptionEdit

Bruce Almighty received mixed reviews from critics. The film has a score of 49% on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 189 reviews, with an average rating of 5.66/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Carrey is hilarious in the slapstick scenes, but Bruce Almighty gets bogged down in treacle".[7] The film also has a score of 46 out of 100 on Metacritic, based on 35 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[8] The film was released in the United Kingdom on June 27, 2003, and topped the country's box office that weekend.[9]

ControversyEdit

The film was banned in Egypt, due to the portrayal of God as a visually ordinary man. Bans in both Malaysia and Egypt were eventually lifted after the censorship boards in respective countries gave it the highest rating (18-PL in the case of Malaysia).[10][11]

Since God contacts Bruce using an actual phone number rather than a number in the standard fictional 555 telephone exchange, several people and groups sharing this number subsequently received hundreds of phone calls from people wanting to talk to God, including a church in North Carolina (where the Minister was named Bruce), a Pastor in Northern Wisconsin and a man in Manchester, England.[12] The producers noted that the number (776-2323) was not in use in the area code (716, which was never specified on screen) in the film's story but did not check anywhere else. The home video and television versions changed it to the fictional 555-0123.[13][12]

Spin-off/sequelEdit

A spin-off/sequel, titled Evan Almighty, was released on June 22, 2007, with Steve Carell reprising his role as Evan Baxter and Morgan Freeman returning to his role as God. Although Shadyac returned to direct the sequel, neither Carrey nor Aniston was involved with the film, and Carrey's character, Bruce, is never mentioned in the film. The sequel earned a 23% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 37/100 score on Metacritic.

Awards and nominationsEdit

Association Category Nominee Results
ASCAP Film and Television Music award Top Box Office Films John Debney Won
ASCAP Film and Television Music award Most Performed Song from a Motion Picture "I'm With You" Graham Edwards

Avril Lavigne

Won
BET Comedy award Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Box Office Movie Morgan Freeman Nominated
Black Reel award Film: Best Supporting Actor Morgan Freeman Nominated
Golden Schmoes award Most Overrated Movie of the Year N/A Nominated
Image award Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture Morgan Freeman Won
MTV Movie + TV award Best Comedic Performance Jim Carrey Nominated
MTV Movie + TV award Best Kiss Jim Carrey

Jennifer Aniston

Nominated
MTV Movie award, Mexico Most Divine Miracle in a Movie (for the chest of Grace) Jim Carrey Won
Nickelodeon Kid's Choice award Favorite Movie N/A Nominated
Nickelodeon Kid's Choice award Favorite Movie Actor Jim Carrey Won
People's Choice award Favorite Comedy Motion Picture N/A Won
Teen Choice award Choice Movie Actor - Comedy Jim Carrey Won
Teen Choice award Choice Movie Actress - Comedy Jennifer Aniston Nominated
Teen Choice award Choice Movie - Chemistry Jim Carrey

Morgan Freeman

Nominated

SoundtrackEdit

Bruce Almighty: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by
John Debney, Various Artists
ReleasedJune 3, 2003
GenreSoundtrack
LabelVarèse Sarabande
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic      [14]

The soundtrack was released on June 3, 2003 by Varèse Sarabande. Tracks 8-13 are from the score composed by John Debney, performed by the Hollywood Studio Symphony (conducted by Pete Anthony) with Brad Dechter and Sandy De Crescent.

Track listing
  1. "One of Us" - Joan Osborne
  2. "God Shaped Hole" - Plumb
  3. "You're a God" - Vertical Horizon
  4. "The Power" - Snap!
  5. "A Little Less Conversation" - Elvis vs. JXL
  6. "The Rockafeller Skank" - Fatboy Slim
  7. "God Gave Me Everything" - Mick Jagger featuring Lenny Kravitz
  8. "AB Positive"
  9. "Walking on Water"
  10. "Bruce Meets God"
  11. "Bruce's Prayer"
  12. "Grace's Prayer"
  13. "Seventh at Seven"
  14. "Binti" [[Afrikanation Mziki - https://mdundo.com/song/76688]

AdaptationsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Frequently Asked Questions". Jim Carrey Online. Archived from the original on February 27, 2009. Retrieved February 18, 2009.
  2. ^ "BVI hits milestones with Pirates, Bruce Almighty". ScreenDaily. Archived from the original on January 13, 2018. Retrieved January 12, 2018.
  3. ^ "BVI goes over the top o'seas". Variety. Archived from the original on January 13, 2018. Retrieved January 12, 2018.
  4. ^ "BRUCE ALMIGHTY (12A)". British Board of Film Classification. 2003-05-22. Retrieved 2012-01-13.
  5. ^ a b "Bruce Almighty (2003)". Box Office Mojo. Amazon.com. Archived from the original on 2010-04-08. Retrieved 2010-04-05.
  6. ^ "Bruce Blesses Memorial Weekend with $85.73 Million". Archived from the original on 2006-06-14. Retrieved 2006-05-31.
  7. ^ "Rotten Tomatoes on Bruce Almighty". Archived from the original on 2010-08-17. Retrieved 2010-12-14.
  8. ^ "Metacritic on Bruce Almighty". Archived from the original on 2010-08-23. Retrieved 2010-12-14.
  9. ^ "Weekend box office 27th June 2003 - 29th June 2003". www.25thframe.co.uk. Archived from the original on 30 December 2016. Retrieved 9 March 2017.
  10. ^ "Middle East Online". Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2007-06-24.
  11. ^ "Malaysian Muslims call for ban on movie, AFP, Fri July 13, 2007". Archived from the original on December 7, 2008.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  12. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-11-07. Retrieved 2015-01-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-05-14. Retrieved 2007-04-10.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ Phares, Heather. "Review: Bruce Almighty: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack". AllMusic. Retrieved 30 August 2009.

External linksEdit