User Score
7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 235 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 19 out of 235
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  1. Uter
    Nov 20, 2003
    6
    It's entertaining, but not up to par with most of Jim's movies. But if Carey wasn't in the movie it'd be completely forgettable.
  2. WAKOJAKO
    May 27, 2003
    5
    Unveven, predictable, cliche-ridden, but rather enjoyable and funnier than most recent commedies. Still, I wish the jokes were darker and edgier, like the anchorman scene's... I dunno, maybe I'm just mean spirited, or maybe I just wish the whole thing hadn't felt so whitewashed, especially towards the end. It should have been whackier, more convoluted, farout funny. Unveven, predictable, cliche-ridden, but rather enjoyable and funnier than most recent commedies. Still, I wish the jokes were darker and edgier, like the anchorman scene's... I dunno, maybe I'm just mean spirited, or maybe I just wish the whole thing hadn't felt so whitewashed, especially towards the end. It should have been whackier, more convoluted, farout funny. Filmakers had a great counterbalance in Morgan Freeman's character as God. But he seems almost (and that's a BIG ALMOST, but no quite) wasted. His bits were among the most enjoyable, bringing class and a sense of normalcy to the disjointed Carrey. Expand
  3. Kbmb
    Jun 6, 2003
    5
    Jim Carrey does what he does best in this movie. Unfortunately, he does it to the extreme. It's hard to tell whether or not we are to believe Carrey's character is wearing the 'Mask' or not. The movie is one flamboyant, almost embarassing Carrey-esque joke after the other, until toward the end where the movie suddenly gets deadly serious, and an outcome I for one was Jim Carrey does what he does best in this movie. Unfortunately, he does it to the extreme. It's hard to tell whether or not we are to believe Carrey's character is wearing the 'Mask' or not. The movie is one flamboyant, almost embarassing Carrey-esque joke after the other, until toward the end where the movie suddenly gets deadly serious, and an outcome I for one was not hoping for. Carrey's God-like powers sure are dry, which include barely more than teaching a dog to use the bathroom, standing up on a large tower and getting a new car. His life prior to getting the powers was also pretty damn luxerious by today's standards. Hey God, give me some damn powers. Aniston shows that she CAN do better than an abysmal NBC sitcom, but what lead her to believe this was a positive route is beyond me. Expand
  4. GaryG.
    May 17, 2004
    4
    When it tries to tug at the heartstrings, it loses momentum. Carrey has done better.
  5. JulianW.
    Dec 21, 2003
    5
    Some nice jokes, Carrey's mimic is just awsome. But an amount of failed gags. An amount!
  6. PatC.
    Jan 26, 2004
    5
    A slipshod construction. Gags that work are intertwined with ones that don't. With a little more polish and judicious editing, this could have been one of the great comedies. The good parts are really good, making the mundane ones all the more disappointing. Only Morgan Freeman and the dog remained in character.
  7. Jan 25, 2013
    4
    Bruce Almighty could very well be the one film where Jim Carrey gives everything he's got, making a character so over-the-top and goofy that it would go on to be one of his best performances. Not in my eyes. From the first few frames with Jim Carrey's character, I knew this endeavor may not go so well and, sure enough, I was correct. It has taken me a long time to warm to Carrey the sameBruce Almighty could very well be the one film where Jim Carrey gives everything he's got, making a character so over-the-top and goofy that it would go on to be one of his best performances. Not in my eyes. From the first few frames with Jim Carrey's character, I knew this endeavor may not go so well and, sure enough, I was correct. It has taken me a long time to warm to Carrey the same way I've warned to actors such as Jack Black, but his crazy personality is something that has left me quite annoyed in many of his films. Upon seeing it, I was a little disappointed by how bumbling and idiotic both him and Jeff Daniels were in Dumb and Dumber, yet the film now seems to be one of Carrey's stronger works when put under the same light as this film.

    To put it simply, this is a tired comedy exercise, unsuccessfully blending its religious premise with slapstick, and tacking on mawkish sentimentality making the last thirty minutes a gooey slog to watch. We follow Bruce Nolan (Jim Carrey), a second-rate reporter for a news station in Buffalo, New York, who has just lost an open anchoring positioning to Evan Baxter (Steve Carell), the conniving, smarmy man who loves one-upping Bruce. Frustrated and angry, Bruce throws a fit while interviewing people at Niagara Falls, costing him his job, which causes him to yell at his wife (Jennifer Aniston) and focus all his blame on God for shifting focus on him.

    Bruce then receives persistent pager messages from an unknown number, which he begins to ignore, until caving in and realizing that it requests him to go to a deserted warehouse to meet the one and only God (Morgan Freeman), who tells Bruce that keeping up with several pray requests and helping out so many in need is a difficult job that is often taken advantage of or underappreciated on the grandscale. He then gives Bruce his position, equipping him with all the divine powers (IE: walking on water and possessing the ability to accurately imitate people), and the unprecedented, unearthly responsibility of keeping those in touch with their faith happy and joyous.

    But before we get into the sentiment, let's explore the infinite comic possibilities of Jim Carrey being God. In the relative beginning of the film, to end off of Bruce's bad day at work, he is beaten up by a group of local thugs when he attempts to protect a harmless bum. When Bruce now possesses powers, he intimidates the thugs and the one thug makes some sort of comment involving "monkeys flying out of his butt" and you can bet your bottom dollar Bruce makes it happen in a ridiculously unfunny scene that channels the worst comic tendencies of a PG-13 screenplay. It too doesn't help that Bruce's character is an ungrateful man of little charm and so much zaniness that he induces a headache every time his mouth opens.

    There's Carrey's hyperactive tendencies, and just the obligatory fact that this story practically extracts every laugh and every tear (there will be audiences, quite possibly those who are religious, but not enough to where they can't laugh at the form of satire) with a premise that basically concocts this very anemic, tired tale of redemption and "putting yourself in the shoes of the person you criticize."

    This is the third time director Tom Shadyac and Jim Carrey have collaborated on a film, with the first two being Ace Ventura: Pet Detective and Liar Liar. Both films expressed Carrey's style with the same rabble-rousing, uncontrolled behavior this one showcases, but with more of an emphasis on humor and spontaneous enjoyment rather than heavy-handed religious satire. I also learn it took three people to pen this story, Steve Koren, Mark O'Keefe, and Steve Oedekerk. One thing I could've guaranteed from the start, if I knew the writers, was a nice emotional third act, which Koren churned out to his advantage in Click but in a too little, too late fashion in A Thousand Words. Those films centered Adam Sandler and Eddie Murphy, respectively, in their madness, where this one victimizes Jim Carrey showing that he can be funny, if taken in smaller doses.

    Yet I can see devoted fans of Carrey's anarchic comedy embracing this film with an open mind and a willingness to laugh. There's a larger audience for this film than I can estimate, yet in the small world of satirical comedies with religion in their crosshairs, I can assume why studios aren't cranking out more of them, and I don't believe controversy is the prime reason.

    Starring: Jim Carrey, Morgan Freeman, Jennifer Aniston, and Philip Baker Hall. Directed by: Tom Shadyac.
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  8. JohnY.
    May 25, 2003
    6
    It looked great on paper. Yet, like so many current comedies, the execution fails to fulfill the concept?s potential. Here?s a man embedded with God?s limitless powers, and the best gag the writers can devise involves house-training a dog? Carrey tries to elevate the material and succeeds on occasion, but that?s not enough, even for God.
  9. AnneC.
    Nov 25, 2003
    6
    Not bad, but not as funny as I'd thought. The strange thing is, the singlemost funniest moment in the movie, the one that EVERYONE in the theater went nuts over (the rival reporter speaking absolute jibberish) isn't even Jim's.
  10. NickD.
    Dec 19, 2003
    6
    This movie did not live up to the expectations I thought it would. Its not bad but could have been much better than what it is.
  11. ChadS.
    May 27, 2003
    6
    Satan isn't on-screen, but give him co-credit for the screenplay. After Carrey's scene with Catherine Bell, "Bruce Almighty" turns into "Adaptation". Your good time ends there. For the next twenty minutes, the devil does Capra. Shadyac wants us to laugh and cry, but a savvy audience will laugh, then laugh in disbelief. Carrey isn't a miracle worker. No actor can look up Satan isn't on-screen, but give him co-credit for the screenplay. After Carrey's scene with Catherine Bell, "Bruce Almighty" turns into "Adaptation". Your good time ends there. For the next twenty minutes, the devil does Capra. Shadyac wants us to laugh and cry, but a savvy audience will laugh, then laugh in disbelief. Carrey isn't a miracle worker. No actor can look up into the heavens with tear-stained eyes and not look goofy, given the context. Expand
  12. AMovieCritic
    Nov 27, 2004
    6
    Takes a long time to build up momentum, and when it does, it then sinks back into a very sentimental 2nd half. There are some funny moments, but it's not as funny as you'd think. A good movie, but more jokes and less of the sentimental stuff would have helped.
  13. Aug 29, 2014
    4
    The premise of Bruce Almighty is a notable one. There's plenty of potential here, especially with Jennifer Aniston at the top of her game. But the film would've succeeded much more with the loss of Jim Carrey entirely.
  14. May 25, 2014
    6
    Bruce Almighty is actually a pretty good comedy yes its another Jim Carrey comedy movie but this one is toned back from others like The Cable Guy, Ace Ventura 1&2, The Mask, Liar Liar not that i dont love those movies because i do its that those movies are pure comdies while this is a bit more grown up and has a little heart to it. Jim Carrey as Bruce Nolan was a delight it was classicBruce Almighty is actually a pretty good comedy yes its another Jim Carrey comedy movie but this one is toned back from others like The Cable Guy, Ace Ventura 1&2, The Mask, Liar Liar not that i dont love those movies because i do its that those movies are pure comdies while this is a bit more grown up and has a little heart to it. Jim Carrey as Bruce Nolan was a delight it was classic Carrey with the funny expressions and dialog that had me laughing throughout. The film also has a bunch of other stars like Morgan Freeman aka a real God, Jennifer Aniston she plays Carrey's wife she does did an ok job nothing great though, there is also Steve Carell, Catherine Bell, Philip Baker Hall all of them did great. I guess Steve Carell did a good enough job to get a spin off movie Evan Almighty although that movie was crap. Bruce Almighty is a good fun time and worth a watch i know some people hate that its religious but i dont even care about that.

    Overall i give it a 6.5
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  15. Jul 24, 2014
    6
    Jim Carrey and Morgan Freeman make a delightful-to-watch duo this comedic farce. Sad to say, without them, the movie would have fallen flat on the ground, as flat and dull as a sheet of white paper. The script is sloppy, as is the entire movie, when looking from the larger perspective. Carrey and Morgan save this movie from disaster, as evidenced by the box office success.
  16. Dec 7, 2014
    6
    Though Jim Carrey and Morgan Freeman are always welcome and the effects are impressive, "Bruce Almighty" is not nearly as satisfying as many comedy movies are.
Metascore
46

Mixed or average reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 35
  2. Negative: 7 out of 35
  1. 75
    Aniston, as a sweet kindergarten teacher and fiancee, shows again (after "The Good Girl") that she really will have a movie career.
  2. 33
    Like his (Carrey) early work, it's not a particularly good film -- insipidly staged, inanely plotted, too weak to withstand the weight of any inquiries into logic or continuity -- but Carrey's energetic mugging, particularly early on, makes it relatively painless.
  3. The screenplay doesn't ultimately make much sense. Carrey is a unique comic talent, though, and Freeman and Aniston back him up with such sensitive supporting performances that the film almost works if you can suspend enough disbelief to swallow its fantastic premise.