The Man Who Knew Too Little (1997)

DailyView: Day 321, Movie 460

This did not feel like a movie that could have possibly failed. Bill Murray in a comedy filled with miscommunication and a dialogue heavy story. Unfortunately, this movie does it.

Wallace Ritchie (Bill Murray) comes to London to see his brother James (Peter Gallagher) on Wallace’s birthday. James has a major business meeting and he does not want his brother hanging around. So he sets him up with a special treat, an improv theater business called “The Theater of Life” that treats the customer as a character in a crime drama. However, a miscommunication lands Wallace in the middle of a real crime spy story, still thinking that he is in the Theater of Life.

This was really the only joke going on in the movie. It is a continuous miscommunication, with no one smart enough to figure it out and Wallace being unnaturally lucky in situation after situation.

The Man Who Knew Too Little, which parodied the classic Hitchcock film title (The Man Who Knew Too Much), was not funny and had so many ridiculous moments that I lost interest soon after the film started. Wallace was such a dimwit that there was no way that this film would work, except that everyone else in the movie was way stupider.

There is a good cast here, led by Murray that also included Alfred Molina, John Standing, Joanne Whalley, Richard Wilson, Geraldine James, and Anna Chancellor.

Silly and ridiculous. One-joke film only. Bill Murray deserved better than this.

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