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Review: The Invention of Lying

Gervais not inventive enough
By MIKE MILIARD  |  October 9, 2009
2.5 2.5 Stars


In the world of this debut effort from Ricky Gervais (he shares the directing with Matthew Robinson), there are no movies. There’s only Lecture Films, a studio that produces pictures in which actors read from accounts of historical events. Filmmaking, after all, is a form of lying. 

READLie of theland; Lying liars, and the end of accountability. By Mike Miliard. 

In this world (which looks a lot like Lowell), truth is all there is: cola is advertised with the slogan “Coke: It’s Very Famous,” and a nursing home is called “A Sad Place for Hopeless Old People.” One day, however, Gervais’s schlubby character tells a fib about some money. Then he tells a taller tale about what happens after we die. Suddenly, the world is his oyster. Until things get complicated.

Gervais has put together a top-notch cast (Jennifer Garner, Louis C.K., Tina Fey, Jonah Hill, Rob Lowe), and for a while his script is sharp, funny, and inventive. Too bad the last third of the movie devolves into formulaic rom-com, demonstrating that lies are at least more truthful than clichés.

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  Topics: Reviews , Celebrity News, Entertainment, Lowell,  More more >
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