Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994) – Tom Shadyac


Jim Carrey stars in this final recommendation from Monsieur Hulot in Great Movies – 100 Years of Film. It has been almost 20 years since I last saw this film, and at the time I had grown so tired of it, because it was played constantly in the video store I worked in. Played so often, that whether I wanted to or not, I knew all the dialogue, I mean, at first, I did enjoy the film, but I grew to hate it.

So I wondered… 20 years on, now that I have to watch it again as I work my way through these titles what would I think?

I’ll be honest, I enjoyed it again, sure it’s silly, sometimes downright inane, but Carrey, he of the rubber face, is clearly having lots of fun, and is at the top of his comedic peak here. Since then he’s gone on to other things, but this one made him into a movie star, but it’s films like The Majestic and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind that solidified his as a solid actor.


Ace, is the world’s only pet detective, and he surprisingly has a lot of business! He’s hired by Melissa Robinson (Courtney Cox), to help recover the Miami Dolphins kidnapped mascot before the upcoming Super Bowl.

With wacky impressions, physical comedy, and a recognizable cast surrounding him in the forms of horror icon Udo Kier, Tone Loc, and Sean Young, Ace dives headfirst into this mystery that is fairly easy to figure out, but the comedy aspects, which range from coarse to silly, make for a pretty entertaining romp.

The sequence at Ron Camp’s (Kier) party is probably my favorite, followed by the mental institution scene, as it jumps from slapstick to homage, and it all comes along at a rapid fire pace.

It also keeps it quick and short, running at 86 minutes, this one is done before it can grate on one’s nerves.


There is some really funny moments, and watching Carrey cavort around in the screen, he comes across as really having a good time, and that enthusiasm is infectious to the viewing audience. I couldn’t help but laugh and chuckle. Course I won’t watch it as constantly as it played in the video store, but I wouldn’t be adverse to watching it again.

I think, if asked, I would point to Carrey’s performance is simply, incredibly enjoyable. I mean, he was up there pretty much making an ass of himself, and yet, somehow, making it look absurdly cool. Not to mention that so many lines of dialogue found its way into the lexicon of pop culture.

The film generated a sequel shortly after, and a prequel (without Carrey) that came way too late, but this, the first one, is still actually really entertaining, and may be a rediscovered guilty pleasure for me.

I am looking forward to the next selection of titles coming up though, because, it’s going to be a romp through some truly classic films!!!

What’s your favorite Carrey comedy?



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