Netflix Instant Pick: I Love You Phillip Morris
Updated: Sep 5, 2018
It’s a damn shame that I Love You Phillip Morris was shuffled around on the release schedule for so long and ultimately given an extremely limited release, no doubt because studio executives and marketing departments were wary of its subject matter. But now you can watch one of the funniest and sweetest movies I’ve seen in a long time on Netflix Instant.
Co-writers/co-directors Glenn Ficara and John Requa have their comedy bona fides down pat as the writers of Bad Santa and the directors of last year’s Crazy Stupid Love. What set both of those movies apart from the pack, and what flavors I Love You Phillip Morris throughout, is Ficara’s and Requa’s extreme respect for and aptitude at creating believable love, in all its forms, whether it’s between a sad-sack mall Santa and an even more sad-sack kid (Bad Santa), a straight man and his protege (Crazy Stupid Love), a husband and wife grappling with infidelity (also Crazy Stupid Love) or a conman prisoner who falls in love with his cellmate, which is the central relationship of I Love You Phillip Morris.
In I Love You Phillip Morris, Jim Carrey (in easily his best performance since Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) plays Steven Russell, a cop who ultimately divorces his wife (Leslie Mann) and comes out of the closet. To fund his lavish lifestyle, he soon becomes a con artist, and when those exploits land him in a Texas prison, he falls deeply in love with his cellmate, the titular Phillip Morris, played by Ewan McGregor, who imbues Morris with the perfect mix of sensitivity and sweetness. Their love for each other is so strong that Russell falls into one long strand of cons, scams and frauds after another to ensure that he can always be near the man he loves. I Love You Phillip Morris succeeds as both a comedy and a touching love story, but what truly elevates this movie to the next level are the performances of Carrey and McGregor. And to top it all off, as outlandish as the story is, it’s even more amazing that it is actually true and took place right here in Texas, which makes it all the more enjoyable.
Check out the trailer.