Witless Protection (PG-13)

Comedy 97 February 22, 2008
By Luke Y. Thompson
One knows, or ought to know, what to expect in a movie featuring Dan Whitney’s “Larry the Cable Guy” character: much bodily-function humor, including several scenes in which Whitney will be almost naked and reveling in his own physical grotesqueness; mild jokes at the expense of foreigners and liberals; and copious country-music references. Unfortunately, what you can’t count on is the enthusiasm of his stand-up act--Whitney exerts more energy in his segment of Blue Collar Comedy Tour: The Movie than in Health Inspector, Delta Farce, and Witless Protection combined. Barely written and directed by TV helmer Charles Robert Carner, Witless Protection is a riff on Midnight Run . . . so much so that Yaphet Kotto actually reprises his role from that film as FBI agent Alonzo Mosely, who this time is a villain on the take, which is why Larry kidnaps rich-bitch Madeleine (Ivana Milicevic) away from the feds who are supposedly her witness protection. Whitney remains affable throughout, but there are few belly laughs. Still, it’s hard to despise the movie, especially when Peter Stormare shows up over-enunciating the most brilliantly awful English accent of all time. It should be noted, though, that at no point does Larry ever say his catchphrase, “Git-r-done!” It’s one thing if Whitney wants to expand his range as an actor, but if you’re gonna be in Skynyrd, you gots to play “Free Bird.”
Charles Robert Carner Larry The Cable Guy, Ivana Milicevic, Yaphet Kotto, Peter Stormare, Eric Roberts, Joe Mantegna, Jenny McCarthy, Lisa Lampanelli, Steve Christopher, Cyn Dulay Charles Robert Carner Alan C. Blomquist, J.P. Williams Lionsgate Films

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