So this is how far Ben Stiller has come in his years. He went from rather ingenious comedy in his old FOX show now starring in remakes of romance comedies that try to break free from the doldrums with over the top sex comedy, and utterly flat improv with his father who plays (surprise, surprise!) a wacky outspoken senior citizen. And trying to break from the conventions, he also pretty much dives head first in to them with endless montages set to forgettable pop rock, and there’s even a prat fall with a bad stunt double that the Farrelly brothers rely on when everything Stiller does fails to draw even the slightest of chuckles.
Picking up the slack for him is Rob Corddry as his friend Mac, an unhappily married man who mocks Eddie at every turn and can’t salvage the lack of charisma or timing Stiller presents; not to mention there’s the obligatory homophobic humor that’s just dead on arrival and Mexican stereotypes aplenty. Eddie is a shallow self-absorbed man now reaching his forties who is intent on meeting the right woman only because he wants to basically upstage his ex-fiancé. After a convenient mugging he meets the lovely Lila (Malin Akerman doing an apparent impression of Drew Barrymore) who seems like the perfect woman after a roller coaster six weeks (and three cheesy montages). She now has to relocate due to her job and being the rational man he is that we should all root for, Eddie decides to marry her.
Shocking enough after a six week relationship he discovers Lila isn’t the perfect woman. Lila, while very attractive is pretty much just a moron which is supposed to be humorous but comes off as just a desperate grasp to create an antagonist so we won’t despise Eddie when he begins to like Miranda. Miranda is the opposite to Lila, a dark brunette who appeals to Eddie after another convenient meeting involving a camera. She is of course outspoken, a boozer and gutsy so as to entice the audience and this utter idiot Eddie. The writers anxiously try to keep Eddie the protagonist, but in reality the only actual sympathetic character we can enjoy watching is Miranda in spite of the fact that she’s not actually interesting at all.
After even more segments involving Eddie and Miranda’s courtship, the weight shifts as Lila inadvertently goes from villain to victim as Eddie becomes the villain who seems so superficial he’s willing to destroy Lila in spite the fact that she’s an unwitting imbecile. The writers desperately cling to the notion that Eddie is automatically the hero since it’s Stiller, but he’s so despicable at no moment can we ever see his point of view, even when Lila is at her worst. The rest of “The Heartbreak Kid” revolves around wacky stunts and horrible over the top outbursts from Stiller, and this proves the Farrelly brothers have more than overstayed their welcome. This is a miserable pathetic mean spirited effort on the Farrelly brothers who continue to squander away any and all potential for brilliance on Ben Stiller who just hits those flat notes on every single film he stars in.