Movie Review: My Name is Bruce

Bruce Campbell movies are kind of hit and miss for me. Of course I loved the Evil Dead trilogy. Bubba Ho-Tep was awesome too. But it seems that for every great, idiosyncratic Bruce Campbell movie, he does another that's horrifically bad. And not in a "so bad it's good" sort of way, either. I'm talking about you, Man With a Screaming Brain. So it's with a bit of trepidation that I popped in My Name is Bruce.


The movie is about a kid who offends Chinese burial grounds and unleashes the Chinese god Guan-di on a small town. The kid is a big fan of Bruce Campbell, and he reasons that only Bruce (who, obviously, plays himself in the movie) can eradicate Guan-di. The kid brings him to his small town and Bruce receives a hero's welcome (as well as catching the eye of the kid's mom). Bruce thinks it's all a gag with actors reinacting a movie, so he's all Mr. Fancy Pants action hero until he discovers the Chinese god is real. He's faced with a dilemma: follow his cowardly instincts and make a break for it, or confront the monster and save not only his biggest fan, but also the mom who has caught his fancy.

Let's use the old standby movie review format:

The Good
Bruce actually does a good job in this movie. He doesn't explore much new ground in terms of character development, but Bruce was fun to watch and he plays his role pretty well. I liked seeing the "actor" side of Bruce, i.e. the demanding, petulant child-like star. There were a few scenes in which he really hammed it up, but for the most part he was pretty funny, in a Bruce Campbell sort of way.

It's good that he comes off well because the movie is very much a tribute to Bruce, with plenty of fun references to his previous movies. And there's a movie-within-a-movie parody that was pretty funny as he pokes fun not only at the movies he's in, but also the characters in which he's typecast.

The Bad
I had a hard time warming up to the monster. The costume was pretty bad and it had the overall feel of a Scooby Doo monster-of-the-week. I would have much preferred zombies.

Some scenes are over the top, trying really hard to be funny but missing the mark entirely. Specifically, I'm talking about the scenes with Ted Raimi. He played multiple characters in this movie and they all failed miserably.

The Ugly
I saw the move on Blu-Ray, but the transfer was abominable so I might as well have watched it on DVD. The pixellation was so prevalent in some shots that I felt like I was watching a compressed WMV movie.

Conclusion
If you've never seen a Bruce Campbell flick, this movie will probably do nothing for you. But being a Bruce Campbell fan myself, I enjoyed it. Don't expect anything even remotely deep, and certainly don't expect anything as fun or as interesting as the Evil Dead trilogy. But if you've enjoyed Bruce's movies in the past, you'll likely find something in this movie that you'll enjoy.

Rating: 3/5 Deadites



Trailer:

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