"Dumb And Dumberer" unfortunately lives up to its' title and comes in as a poor ripoff of the original.
Dumb And Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd
Directors: Troy Miller
Producers: Troy Miller, Charles B. Wessler, Oren Koules And Brad Krevoy
Writers: Robert Brenner And Troy Miller
Lloyd Christmas...Eric Christian Olsen
Harry Dunne...Derek Richardson
School Janitor...Luis Guzman
Principal Collins...Eugene Levy
Mrs. Dunne...Mimi Rogers
Jessica's Mom...Julia Duffy
Ms. Heller...Cheri Oteri
Carl...William Lee Scott
"Dumb And Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd" actually gains flight for a couple of seconds, but like the Wright brothers plane at Kitty Hawk comes down with a resounding thud. This movie is the prequel to 1994's "Dumb And Dumber" which made a star of Jim Carrey and the Farrelly brothers a force to be reckoned with. Unlike it's descendant this new movie lacks a plot.
The story starts out with what could be a Farrelly brothers type of humor in a hospital delivery room. Then there are some tepid childhood growing up shots. Next, a teenage Lloyd is seen dancing in his high school hallway to a collage of Vanilla Ice and Queen/David Bowie's "Under Pressure." Things look cool, but then the actual story starts and the good times end. It turns out Lloyd lives at his high school because his dad, played by Luis Guzman, is the school janitor. Harry is a new student as he has been home schooled by his mother played by Mimi Rogers. They meet and hit it off immediately. When Harry becomes infatuated with Jessica(Rachel Nichols), a reporter for the school paper, Lloyd is there to warn him that she has cooties. In the Principal's office, Principal Collins and Ms. Heller(Cheri Oteri), the cafeteria lady, are messing around. At the same time Collins is outlining a new plan of his to continue bilking the school out of money(For some unknown reason other than to further a weak story, Collins lets it be known that he records everything that happens in his office on cassette tape.) Collins has heard of a new program where any school with a Special Needs program gets a hundred thousand dollar grant. The school has no class like that at the moment, but he looks around and secures Lloyd and Harry as the foundation of the group. Collins tells the two boys to round up some other Needy students and Ms. Heller will be the teacher. When Jessica hears about this new Special Needs class she gets suspicious and starts her own investigation.
"Dumb And Dumberer" tries to keep some continuity with the original, but it is not enough to save it from the huge holes in the story. The film begins in Providence, Rhode Island where many of the Farrelly brothers movies start. Lin Shaye, a Farrelley brother regular, makes a short appearance as a school bus driver. When Lloyd and Harry first meet it is with a collision on a street corner sidewalk that leaves Lloyd with his chipped tooth. The two actors playing Lloyd and Harry, Eric Christian Olsen and Derek Richardson, respectively, look like younger versions of Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels. Near the end of the movie a car drives up with a set of twins who come on to the boys as the bus full of tanning models did to their descendants in "Dumb And Dumber" with much the same result.
Some of the many holes in the movie, not including the principal's fondness for taping everything, are Collins kidnapping Jessica when he thinks she took his cassettes. Collins bothers to stop and phone her mother and talk in a girl's voice saying that Jessica will be doing an all nighter at a friend's house. At Collin's house Jessica, looking bored, sits in a chair near a wide open window unrestrained while Collins is out of sight doing something. She even tells Lloyd and Harry who have followed her and are now outside the window to go away. She says, "Don't worry about me." Later when Collins is at a school assembly awaiting the check of one hundred thousand dollars it is never explained what happened to Jessica. Collins is arrested there because it turns out he has been under investigation for some time and the Special Needs program was just a ruse by the police to catch him red handed. Jessica turns up with no explanation given. So why go through all the machinations of taking the tapes and looking for them other than to fill screen time?
Believe it or not there were a very few funny moments in "Dumb And Dumberer." Lloyd has a fantasy in a grotto surrounded by bikini clad women. Harry's mom and Jessica are two of them who are competing fiercely for his attentions. To solve the dilemma Lloyd instructs them to have a makeout contest whereupon the two women lock lips with each other. Harry pops up and screams, "Mom!" In another scene the boys are listening to a cassette of Principal Collins as he does a sound check by repeating "check" over and over. Harry says it sounds like Chinese. Lloyd pushes fast forward and as the tape squeals he announces, "That's Chinese!"
The actors that played Lloyd and Harry did a good job, but the story by Robert Brenner and Troy Miller(who directed this mess) was so inept that they get my vote to write the sequel to "Dude, Where's my Car?" if it is ever made. Save your money and rent the original "Dumb And Dumber."
This movie gets two out of three stars.